By Dave Hart

MUSKEGON – The past week has been a roller coaster ride for the Muskegon Clippers.

They were on the upswing for most of the week, winning four of five games and temporarily climbing back to the .500 mark.

But then they ended a road trip on Friday by dropping both games of a doubleheader to Irish Hills before a two-day break.

On Monday the Clippers’ struggles continued with a 6-4 loss to the Grand River Loggers at Marsh Field.

Muskegon is now 7-10 on the season, good for a three-way tie for third place in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate Baseball League’s Northern Division.

Muskegon Clippers shortstop Tyler Trovinger avoids the tag and dives into home plate. Photo/Leo Valdez

The Clippers only trailed Grand River by a run after six innings, then allowed the Loggers to take control with three runs in the seventh.

Muskegon gave up four hits and committed two errors in the inning, and suddenly found themselves trailing 6-2.

Overall the Clippers had four errors in the game and committed several mistakes on the base paths that cost a couple of runs.

“It was very disappointing,” said Clippers Manager Walt Gawkowski about his team’s performance. “These games are going to be close, and we just made too many mistakes that hurt us.

“To be in the hunt for a playoff spot all you really have to do is play .500 baseball, and we are now three games under. We have to come back tomorrow and play better and hope we win.”

Muskegon opened the scoring in the third inning on an RBI single by Ryan Blake-Jones.

Ryan Blake-Jones catches the pop up for the Clippers. Photo/Leo Valdez

The Loggers tied the game 1-1 in the fourth inning with an RBI single from Harrison John.

The Clippers regained a 2-1 lead in the top of the fifth on a wild pitch that scored Tyler Trovinger.

Grand River grabbed a 3-2 lead in the sixth inning on an RBI single from John and a sacrifice fly by Patrick Donahue.

The flood gates opened in the seventh inning with RBI singles from Bailey Peterson, Zachary Leone and Anthony Adduci to give Grand River a 6-2 edge.

The Clippers cut into their deficit in the eighth inning with an RBI double from Cameron Bair, then added a run in the ninth on a sacrifice fly from Bryce Kelley.

Muskegon had the tying runs on base with two outs in the ninth, but Peter Zimmermann ended the game with a groundout to third base.

Mitch Ashcraft suffered the loss for the Clippers, allowing six runs on 11 hits while striking out three batters in 6 1/3 innings.