While only managing 2 hits, the Kane County Cougars kept the Quad Cities River Bandits even all the way until the 12th inning when host Quad Cities pulled off a 2-1 victory on Thursday night at Modern Woodmen Park.
Jonathan Cornelius started for the River Bandits (66-69, 31-35) and went 6 perfect innings before Justin Trapp began the seventh with a double to right-center as Cornelius was quickly lifted in favor of Yunior Castillo, who pitched the rest of the seventh without surrendering a run. Castillo did cough up a run in the eight as Julio Aparicio blasted a home run to left-center, giving the Cougars (66-70, 32-34) a 1-0 lead.
Mike Giovenco worked through the first five frames for the Cougars as he made his first start after a season's worth of relief appearances and shutout Quad Cities on three hits. Jose Brazoban worked through the eighth but the lead slip as Matt Williams walked to commence the bottom of the eighth before scoring on a two-out single from Stephen Piscotty.
Heath Wyatt worked three perfect frames for Quad Cities, beginning in the ninth inning while Ethan Cole (4-1) fired off a perfect 12th. Malcom Culver (2-1) wiggled out of Quad Cities scoring chances in the 10th and 11th innings before the River Bandits loaded the bases in the bottom of the 12th with no outs. Gary Apelian drilled a liner to right-center that Aparicio caught, but his throw to the plate was late as Nick Martini scored the game-winning run.
The Cougars are at Modern Woodmen Park on Friday when they take on the River Bandits at 7:00 p.m. You can listen to the broadcast on www.kccougars.com, beginning with Cougars on Deck at 6:45 p.m. Right-hander Jason Mitchell (4-6) will start for the Cougars against fellow righty Sam Gaviglio (8-9). The Cougars return to Fifth Third Bank Ballpark on Saturday when they host the Peoria Chiefs (Single-A Chicago Cubs) at 6:30 p.m. For tickets, please call (630) 232-8811 or visit www.kccougars.com.