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updated: 8/12/2014 10:39 PM

Cougars rally for 4-3 walk-off win

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Special to the Daily Herald

It's hard to top a 15-inning contest as far as memorable games, but somehow the Cougars did.

Just two days after a marathon in Cedar Rapids, the Cougars (30-20, 75-45) took advantage of a handful of Quad Cities mistakes Tuesday night to walk off with a 4-3 victory over the River Bandits (25-25, 60-59) at Fifth Third Bank Ballpark.

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After Quad Cities pitching held the Cougars scoreless through the first eight innings, Frederick Tiburcio took the mound in line for his eighth save of the year.

Victor Caratini, the first batter, hit a slow grounder to the first baseman Chase McDonald. Tiburcio started the collapse by dropping the underhand toss from McDonald and allowing Caratini to reach. That gave way for Jacob Rogers to connect on his 14th home run, bringing the Cougars within 1.

Momentum continued to roll the Cougars' way as a Cael Brockmeyer popup fell untouched just outside the infield dirt and Jeimer Candelario's flyball to shallow right-center was dropped by Ryan Bottger. Chesny Young bunted both runners over.

Tiburcio's next mistake was a wild pitch to Jeffrey Baez that scored the tying run and put the winning run at third. Quad Cities decided to load the bases and intentionally walked Baez and Trey Martin. After Shawon Dunston Jr. struck out, Daniel Lockhart hit a flyball to left field. Left fielder Bobby Boyd positioned himself to record the out, but the ball fell untouched and sent home the winning run.

Tiburcio (1-3) suffered the blown save and the loss as the Cougars walked off for the eighth time this year.

The River Bandits' offense came in the sixth inning as they scored 2 runs to knock Jen-Ho Tseng out of the game. Tseng did not allow a hit until one out in the fifth inning but was on the hook for the loss until the wild ninth. The visitors tacked on 1 more run in the eighth off Michael Wagner.

David Garner (1-0) earned the victory with a scoreless ninth.

Wednesday's matchup features Paul Blackburn (9-4, 3.21) for the Cougars and Andrew Thurman (5-7, 5.46) for the River Bandits. First pitch at Fifth Third Bank Ballpark is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.

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