After Thursday night’s loss, the Garden City Wind once again find themselves at the .500 mark, now sitting at 16-16 overall. The latest setback, 4-1 to Topeka at Clint Lightner Stadium, stopped a short two-game winning streak for the Wind, who had a chance to be two games over .500 for the first time since June 13, when they were 12-10.
Since, the Wind have been at least within one game of the mark, never winning nor losing more than two in a row. Thursday’s loss came at the hands of a stingy Train Robbers pitching staff, which allowed just four hits.
Starter Dmitry Shtykher allowed just two hits and one earned run — a sacrifice fly by Beau Welborn to score Joey Cecere in the first inning — across his six frames. He walked two and struck out two. And after the Train Robbers evened the score with a run in the top of the second and then took the lead in the sixth, Topeka’s bullpen took care of the rest, giving up just two hits and a walk while striking out six in the final three innings.
Though, the Wind did threaten with an unusual last-gasp ninth inning, loading the bases via a single, a hit batsman and a dropped third strike with two outs. But Tyler Shannon struck out Eric Esuilin to end the threat and seal the win for the Train Robbers, who improved to 14-19 in their inaugural season.
Garden City starter Craig Jaquez lasted 7 2/3 innings, giving up four runs — three earned — on seven hits and four walks. He struck out four, but took the loss as he dropped to 1-3 with a 4.72 ERA.
Shtykher improved to 5-1 with a 4.11 ERA for Topeka and Shannon recorded his first save.
The two teams meet again Friday, this time at the Bettis Complex in Topeka for a 7 p.m. game.
Topeka 010 001 110 — 4 7 2
Garden City 100 000 000 — 1 4 1
Shtykher, Geary(7), Truex(8), Shannon(9) and Stading. Jaquez, Hilton(8) and Nelson. W—Shtykher (5-1). L—Jaquez (1-3). Sv—Shannon (1). 2B—Topeka: Taft (2); Garden City: Cecere (9).