MIDLAND, Mich. -- Great Lakes' bullpen teamed up for 14 strikeouts Saturday night as the Loons held on for a 4-2 victory over the Kane County Cougars at the Dow Diamond.
The Cougars (19-9, 64-34) rallied in the bottom of the ninth but fell to the Loons (12-16, 47-51) with the tying and go-ahead runs on base.
Once the Loons' relief staff took over in the fifth, every Cougar out went down on strikes except for a Jake Hannemann flyout. The Cougars' best chance came in the ninth, down 4-1.
A Kevin Brown walk, a Jacob Rogers single and a Will Remillard walk all came around a pair of strikeouts to load the bases for Trey Martin. On a 1-2 count, Martin placed hit a single to right field to bring home Brown and put the tying run in scoring position.
But Matt Campbell continued the strikeout trend, by retiring Giuseppe Papaccio on strikes to end the game.
The Loons sat pretty after a 2-run homer from Paul Hoenecke in the sixth. He drove in 3 runs on the day.
Ralston Cash (3-1) started the strikeout parade by putting away all six hitters he saw on strikes. Jacob Rhame continued with 5 strikeouts through 2 scoreless innings. Campbell, with the 3 K's, made it interesting in the ninth but still picked up the save.
The Cougars grabbed their first run in the fourth on Jeimer Candelario's RBI single.
The series continues Sunday at the Dow Diamond with a 2:05 p.m. first pitch. Tyler Skulina (4-5, 2.93) will take the mound for the Cougars against Great Lakes' Scott Barlow (3-4, 4.43).