(Billings Mustangs release)
HELENA – The Billings Mustangs (9-14) used a ninth-inning comeback to win 6-4 over the Helena Brewers (12-11) in front of 1,807 at Kindrick Legion Field on Saturday.
Both sides remained scoreless in the first before the Mustangs snagged an early lead with a run in the second. Juan Martinez doubled in a run for his second extra-base hit in as many days.
The Brewers responded with two runs in the third for their first advantage of the night on a two-RBI double from Chad McClanahan. McClanahan was 2-for-4 with a double, homerun, and three RBI.
The next three innings saw two ties and two more leads for the Brewers as runs were scored in five consecutive half-innings. Valentin Martinez added in his first homerun of the year during that time, a solo blast in the fifth to make it a 3-3 tie.
Trailing 4-3 after the fifth the Mustangs would get shutout baseball the rest of the way from three relievers. Connor Curlis tossed two shutout innings while Edward Escoboza (1-0) and Jeremy Kivel handled the eighth and ninth, respectively.
Down by a run into the top of the ninth, the Mustangs would have their first batter retired before four of the next five reached. Two walks and an error knocked Chad Whitmer (2-1) out of the game after just three batters. With two outs and the bases loaded, Dylan Harris needed to reach to keep the Mustangs hopes alive. He would triple down the left field line to empty the bases and give them a two-run lead. Harris is now 3-for-3 this season with the bases loaded with eight RBI.
Kivel retired the side in order in the ninth to earn his first save of the season. It was the first time this season the Mustangs have overcome a ninth-inning deficit to win.
The Mustangs will look to win their third consecutive game for the first time this season on Sunday in a two-game series finale against the Brewers. First pitch is set for 1:05 p.m. at Kindrick Legion Field in Helena.