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Baseball: Tigers lose four-run lead

The Farmington baseball team capped off stretch of three road games in four days with a 6-5 nine-inning loss to St. Cloud Apollo Friday night at Dick Putz Field in St. Cloud.

The Tigers led 4-0 early thanks to two-run rallies in the top of the first and third. Nathan Graham started the first with a walk and singles by Jordan Lugowski and Spencer Merle set up bases-loaded walks to Drew Hegseth and Kevin Olund.

Ty Vincent started the third with the first of his team-leading three hits and scored on an error to make it 3-0. Olund followed with an RBI double that brought in Hegseth.

Apollo answered with two runs in the bottom of the third and three more in the fourth against Farmington starting pitcher Jonathan Ellis. It was 5-4 when Ellis left the game having allowed eight hits and a pair of walks.

Spencer Merle came on in relief and held Apollo scoreless for four innings before the winning run came home in the bottom of the ninth.

The Tigers tied the score at 5-5 in the fifth when Vincent doubled and scored on a Hegseth fielder's choice.

Everything came together for the Tigers last Tuesday at New Prague.

Facing a Trojans team coming off back-to-back wins over 11th-ranked (Class 2A) New Ulm and Northfield, the Tigers pounded out 13 hits and rode Hegseth's first career shutout to an 8-0 Missota Conference victory.

Hegseth struck out two, allowed five hits and worked around two walks, a hit-by-pitch and a pair of errors in the complete-game effort. He got all the run support he would need when Lugowski doubled and scored on a Merle single in the top of the first.

Three more runs crossed the plate in the third on RBI singles by Lugowski, Merle and Vincent.

Ryan Schoening and John Stibal each added RBI singles in the later innings and Merle blasted a two-run home run.

A four-run top of the first inning didn't hold up a day later in Red Wing. The Tigers scored just one more run over the final six innings and the undefeated Wingers exploded for eight runs (two earned) in the bottom of the fifth as they rallied for a 12-5 win.

Stibal drove home Lugowski with the game's first run and Graham followed with a bases-clearing single to make it 4-0. It was still 5-4 Farmington through four innings thanks to a Stibal RBI double.

The Wingers (7-0) had just seven hits against three Farmington pitchers, but took advantage of seven walks and three untimely errors.

Lugowski, Merle and Stibal each had two hits for the visitors.

The Tigers (3-7)?traveled to Holy Angels on Tuesday and are back home this afternoon for another Missota Conference game against rival Northfield. The schedule resumes with a non-conference game tomorrow at Apple Valley.