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Mussels twirl two-hit gem to defeat Marauders, 6-1

By Staff | Jul 8, 2024

FORT MYERS – The Mighty Mussels defeated the Bradenton Marauders 6-1 behind a dominant 14-strikeout pitching performance on Saturday night at Hammond Stadium.

Tanner Hall, Jack Noble (4-2), Zack Weiss, and Paulshawn Pasqualotto limited the Bradenton Marauders (35-46, 6-9) to just two singles to lead the Mighty Mussels (42-37, 11-3) to a 5-1 series victory. Hall struck out a season-high seven batters across three strong innings. The righty yielded just one hit and the lone run against him was unearned.

The bullpen trio of Noble, Weiss and Pasqualotto faced the minimum over the final six innings. The only two baserunners were erased via a double play in the sixth and a pickoff by Pasqualotto in the seventh.

Since the series moved to Hammond Stadium on Thursday, Fort Myers’ pitchers did not allow an extra-base hit across three games and held Bradenton hitters to just 2-for-24 with RISP.

In a scoreless game in the bottom of the second inning, catcher Daniel Pena connected on a lead-off homer to left-center to make it 1-0. The blast traveled 396 feet and had an exit velocity of 102.8 mph.

In a tie game in the bottom of the third, Mussels left fielder Ryan McCarthy singled up the middle to put the leadoff man on. Angel Del Rosario followed with an opposite field single. Two batteries later, Isaac Pena rolled a ground out to second, scoring McCarthy and putting the Mussels ahead 2-1.

Still leading by that score in the fifth, Maddux Houghton beat out an infield single to open the frame. Later in the inning, Walker Jenkins roped a 105.3 mph single through the right side of the infield. Houghton scored from third on the play to make it 3-1.

In the sixth, Daniel Pena led off the inning with a single to center. Carlos Aguiar followed with an opposite field double into the left field corner. Nick Lucky and Houghton then connected on a pair of RBI groundouts to make it 5-1.

The next inning, Jenkins worked a leadoff walk for the second time in the game. Isaac Pena followed with a single to right. A wild pitch then set up first and third for Poncho Ruiz, who lifted a fly ball to shallow right field. Jenkins sprinted home from third, beating the throw from Solomon Maguire thanks to a sprint speed of 28.3 feet per second, making it 6-1 on the sac fly.

Fort Myers saw the leadoff batter reach base safely in six of eight offensive innings, maintaining their second half lead in the FSL West at 2.5 games.

The Mussels return to action on Tuesday, July 9 for the start of a six-game series against the Daytona Tortugas. First pitch is set for 6:05 p.m. at Hammond Stadium, with coverage beginning on the Mighty Mussels Baseball Network at 5:45 p.m.