Osprey first basemen holds a runner during Missoula's 15-2 loss to Orem (MTN Sports photo)

(Story from Missoula Osprey)

The Missoula Osprey (22-27 | 3-8) stumbled on Sunday evening, dropping their series finale and rubber match with the Orem Owlz (35-13-1 | 9-2) by a final score of 15-2 at Ogren Park at Allegiance Field.

While a quick first inning hinted that the 1,907 fans in attendance might be treated to a pitching duel on a balmy evening in Missoula, the Osprey pitch staff was summarily derailed in the second inning when Orem catcher Harrison Wenson launched a two-run homer to center field.

Despite loading the bases in the home half of the third, the Osprey failed to chip into Orem’s early lead, stranding the bases full when Joey Rose fouled out to first base. For the first time since mid-July, Rose was held hitless, going 0-for-4 and snapping his 21-game hitting streak.

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In the top of the fourth, Orem exploded for seven runs against three different Osprey pitchers, lunging to a 9-0 lead. Starting pitcher Edgar Martinez was charged with four runs in the fourth inning despite recording just one out. He eventually was saddled with his first loss of the season, pitching three and one-third innings in which he surrendered six runs (five earned) on six hits and two walks, while going without a strikeout.

The next inning, Orem added three runs, widening their lead to 12-0. In the bottom of the fifth, Missoula responded with their first run on a run-scoring fielder’s choice by Ernie De La Trinidad. After Orem added a thirteenth run in the sixth, the Osprey nudged back with their final response at the plate, coming in the form of a sacrifce fly from Jose Caballero. Orem added two runs in the top of the ninth to push the score to its final margin of 15-2, sinking the Osprey to an eighth loss in eleven games to begin the second half.

Missoula received two hits each from Gabriel Maciel, Francis Martinez, and Joel Novas. Andy Yerzy extended his hitting streak to 15 games, now registering as the longest active streak in the Pioneer League.

The Osprey return to action on Monday night for their series opener against the Grand Junction Rockies at Ogren Park at Allegiance Field. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. with gates opening at 6:30 p.m.