Badlands return home for final regular season set
The Big Sticks were greeted by a season-high in attendance at home as they look to end their regular season slate on a high note.
Fresh off clinching a playoff spot earlier this week, the Big Sticks returned home Friday night for a clash with the Canyon County Spuds.
It was the fourth game in a row, continuing their three-game set from Idaho earlier this week.
Badlands shut down the Spuds offense with crisp defensive execution as they won their sixth game in a row 9-1. Despite allowing eight hits, the Big Sticks defense was superb, going errorless on the night.
The highlight of the night came in the top of the seventh inning when Badlands completed a triple play. With runners on first and second, a ground ball was hit to third baseman Anthony Garrett, who stepped on third for the force out, then fired it over to second baseman Wyatt Setian, who did the same, who then threw it to first baseman Eric Martinez.
A perfect 5-4-3 triple play.
It was the Spuds best chance to put up runs as they struggled to string together hits. They had more than one hit in an inning just once.
The quartet of Justin Butz, Kenny Stewart, Matt Johnson and Carson Lundmark kept the game out of reach as they shut down the Spuds. Butz made just his fifth appearance of the season, but has been superb so far, compiling a 2.39 ERA.
Martinez got the scoring started right away with a two-run home run in the first to make it 2-0 Badlands. It was the second home run in his last four games played. He also led the team in RBI and hits on the night with three in both categories.
Lundmark came up big in the fifth, delivering a single with the bases loaded to make it 4-0 for his only RBI of the game. Matt Olive and Garrett had the other RBI for the Big Sticks.
Badlands have caught fire again, winning 14 of their last 18 games. They seem to be peaking at the right time as the playoffs draw closer on Monday night.
They’ll finish off their regular season schedule Saturday night against the Spuds.