One big inning by the Thunder Bay lineup and six strong innings by starting pitcher Blaze Bohall led the Border Cats to a 6-2 Northern League win over Bismarck on Saturday.
With the win, Thunder Bay (2-2 second half, 15-24 overall) earns a split of the two-game series after dropping Friday’s game 5-2 to the Larks (1-3, 17-22).
Bohall set the tone for the Border Cats by striking out nine of the 14 total ring-ups recorded by Thunder Bay pitchers.
“The fact that we tacked on six in the first two innings was huge for me,” Bohall said. “Being able to go out in the second inning with a six-run lead makes it so much easier to throw.”
Bohall went six innings before leaving due to a league-mandated pitch count. He walked only one batter, bringing his season total to nine in 42 innings.
“He’s probably one of the better pitchers we’ve faced all year,” Larks manager Sean Repay said.
It was typical for Bohall (4-1), according to manager Mitchell Feller. “That’s something Blaze has given us since he got here,” he said. “He’s been really consistent at attacking hitters.”
Seth Rosenberg worked two innings and gave up two runs and Connor Centala pitched a hitless ninth inning.
It didn’t take long for Thunder Bay to take control.
The Border Cats scored a run in the first on Cooper Coldiron’s two-out error at short. They tacked on five more in the second to chase Larks starter Frank Greco.
Colin Rosenbaum and Kevin Biondic each had two-run doubles.
Greco took the loss after giving up six runs on five hits. He struck out four and walkws two in just two innings.
Carson Selin came on and worked five scoreless innings. He gave up two hits, struck out four and walked three before turning things over to Noah Luedtke in the eighth and JC Bonilla in the ninth. The Larks’ relievers pitched seven shutout innings, giving up just four hits.
“Frank had a rough go of it,” Repay said. “But our bullpen kept us in the game with seven innings of shutout baseball. That’s a very positive thing from our bullpen.”
The Larks had nine hits, two each by Ryan Anderson and Coldiron.
Scooter Bynum’s double down the left-field line in the eighth ended the shutout bid as Newt Johnson raced home. Bynum later scored on Branden Lankford’s single.
Colin Rosenbaum was 2-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs for the Border Cats. Kevin Biondic added two hits and two RBIs and Dayne Sommer had two hits.
The Larks open a two-game series with St. Cloud today at 5:05 p.m.