By Dave Hart
Muskegon fell short in the opening game by a 6-4 margin.
The Clippers are now 11-13 on the season, good for a third-place tie in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate Baseball League’s Northern Division. They are two games behind the St. Clair Green Giants for the final playoff spot with 18 games remaining.
The Clippers will host the Grand River Loggers in a two-game series at home, starting on Thursday night.
“I thought we were positioned well to get a sweep,” said Clippers Manager Walt Gawkowski. “We have been fighting for that .500 mark for the last couple weeks, and I thought this was a great opportunity.
“We just didn’t do anything offensively in the first game, but that’s baseball. The kids came out in the second game and played hard.”
The Clippers had to rally for the victory in Game 2.
The Leprechauns opened the scoring in the first inning on an RBI single by Chase Colding.
The Clippers responded quickly in the bottom of the first with a solo home run off the bat of Nolan Bryant to tie the game 1-1.
Muskegon took control in the bottom of the fourth with three runs.
The Clippers scored a run on an RBI double by Peter Zimmermann, and two more on two errors by the Leprechaun shortstop to take a 4-1 lead.
Irish Hills cut its deficit to 4-2, scoring on a Clipper miscue, then added another run with an RBI double from Freddy Jehle to pull within a run, 4-3.
The Clippers increased their lead to 5-3 in the bottom of the fifth on an RBI double from Wyatt Featherston.
Muskegon added another run in the run in the sixth, scoring on a wild pitch.
Scott Bean pitched the victory for the Clippers, allowing two earned runs on six hits in five innings.
Clippers closer Brian Taggett picked up the save, tossing two scoreless innings.
In Game 1 the Clippers scored two runs on a home run by Cameron Bair and added another two in the seventh and final frame on a single from Ryan Blake-Jones.
Mitch Ashcraft suffered the loss in the opener, allowing three earned runs in six innings of work.