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MWL: Garver homers twice as Kernels win thriller over Lansing

LANSING, MI -- In the most exciting game of the young 2014 season the Kernels ended up on top with a 10-7 win over the Lansing Lugnuts on Friday evening.  Mitch Garver hit a pair of solo home runs and drove in a third run in the ninth inning to give the Kernels the lead for good.

The game featured a flurry of activity over the final two innings as the teams combined for eight total runs.  The Kernels entered the eighth inning with a slim 5-4 lead.  Garver led off the inning with his second home run of the night a towering blast that hit the pole down the left field line.

Leading 6-4, the Kernels relinquished the lead in the bottom of the eighth inning.  Reliever Yorman Landa issued two hits and three consecutive walks as Lansing took their first lead of the game.  Mitch Nay singled with one out, and a pair of two-out walks loaded the bases.  Nay scored on a wild pitch to make the score 6-5.  Then, another walk by Landa re-loaded the bases for Ian Parmley.  Parmley lined a two-run single into left field to score Justin Atkinson and Carlos Ramirez, giving Lansing a 7-6 lead.

However, the Kernels fought back with four runs in the top of the ninth inning to take a 10-7 lead.  The inning started when Lugnuts reliever Jimmy Cordero walked Jeremias Pineda.  Pineda then advanced to second base on a wild pitch.  With one out Logan Wade struck out swinging but was able to reach first base on a passed ball by catcher Jorge Saez.  The passed ball also allowed Pineda to reach third base.  Zack Larson came to the plate and lined a RBI single into center field, tying the game 7-7.  Michael Quesada followed by drawing a walk, loading the bases for Garver.  Garver, already with two home runs in the game, skied a fly ball to center for a RBI sacrifice fly that scored Wade and gave the Kernels an 8-7 lead.  Chad Christensen gave the Kernels some insurance when he bounced a two-run single into left field to score Wade and Quesada, pushing the Kernels ahead by three runs.

Hudson Boyd picked up his second save by pitching a perfect bottom of the ninth inning with two strikeouts.  Despite getting charged with a blown save, Landa (2-0) was credited as the winning pitching.  Landa allowed three runs in the eighth inning.  Cordero (1-1) took the loss for Lansing.

The night started with a terrific start from Randy Rosario.  The Kernels lefty faced the minimum through three innings and ended up going five innings in a no-decision.  Rosario allowed two total runs on four hits while striking out two and walking one.

The Kernels scored three runs with two outs in the second inning to take the early 3-0 lead.  Christensen and Joel Licon drew back to back walks after two outs were recorded.  Engelb Vielmas RBI single plated Christensen, and Licon came home on a throwing error by Lugnuts centerfielder D.J. Davis

Adonys Cardona started for Lansing and went four innings allowing his three runs, two hits, and two walks in the three-run second inning.

Against reliever Chase De Jong, the Kernels increased their lead to 4-0 in the fifth inning.  Pineda led off with a triple to deep right-center.  Jason Kanzler followed with a RBI single to score Pineda. 

Lansing got on the board in the bottom of the fifth inning, making the score 4-2.  Dawel Lugo singled and later scored on a wild pitch by Rosario.  Atkinson walked and later came on a RBI sacrifice fly by Saez.

Garver hit his first of two home runs on the night in the sixth inning.  This blast led off the sixth inning and went to deep left field, putting the Kernels in front 5-2.

The Lugnuts made the score 5-4 with consecutive RBI doubles by Matt Dean and Nay in the sixth inning off of reliever Ethan Mildren.  Mildren went two innings and allowed two runs on three hits while striking out three and walking one.

Lansings De Jong went a total of four innings and allowed three runs on seven hits.

The Kernels continue the three-game series at Lansing on Saturday afternoon at 1:05 p.m. (CT).  RHP Kohl Stewart (0-0, 3.60) will make his second start the Kernels.  RHP Kendall Graveman (0-0, 0.00) is scheduled to start for Lansing.

The Kernels return home on April 14, opening up a six-game home stand against South Bend and West Michigan.  The game on April 14 v. South Bend begins at 6:35 p.m. and is the first Dollar Monday of the season.  Regular hot dogs, small popcorn, ice cream sandwiches, chips, and Cracker Jacks are each just $1 on Monday home games!

Tickets are available at!  You can also visit the Kernels Ticket Office at Memorial Stadium or call 319-896-7560!

Kernels games are broadcast live on KMRY Radio (93.1 FM/1450 AM) and streamed online at!
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