|Dogs Force Deciding Game 3 With Walk-Off Win|
|Thursday, 09 August 2012 21:23|
The Fayetteville SwampDogs inched closer to a berth in the 2012 Petitt Cup Championship when they avoided elimination by defeating the Forest City Owls, 2-1 in a 12-inning classic at "The Swamp" on Thursday night.
Mike Tauchman (Bradley) scored on a passed ball from third base to give the Dogs a one-run victory.
Forest City took a 1-0 lead into the sixth inning, when Fayetteville was able to tie it up with a two-out rally. Reed Harper (Austin Peay) ripped a double into the left center field gap to get into scoring position, and Sal Giardina (Lynn) followed with an RBI-double to deep right field to plate the first run of the game for the Dogs.
Tauchman threw out the potential lead run to end the top of the10th inning, and Harper leaped up and snagged a line drive to end the Forest City 11th while the Owls had runners on first and second.
The game remained tied until the 12th frame, when Tauchman led off the inning with a single. He promptly stole second and third base, as he stood 90 feet away from forcing a deciding game three. A fastball up and in to Harper ricocheted off the catcher's glove and rolled to the backstop, allowing Tauchman to come in to score and win the game for Fayetteville.
Starter Gary Ashcraft (Francis Marion) worked six innings and allowed one earned run, and the bullpen combined for six shutout innings of work. James Simmons (Hardin-Simmons) has now worked 8.1 scoreless innings in the playoffs, and Tyler Brunnemann (Hardin-Simmons) has seven strikeouts in four innings. Max McDonald (St. Edward's) picked up the win in his first relief appearance of the season.
Game three will take place tomorrow night at "The Swamp," with the winner advancing to the championship round to take on the fourth-seeded Columbia Blowfish. For tickets, visit or call the business office at (910)-426-5900, and for all things SwampDogs log on to www.goswampdogs.com.