Ponies victorious over F-Cats in back-and-forth battle

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MANCHESTER, NH – Tuesday marked Tim Tebow’s first contest against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats but it also acted as a reminder another Fisher Cat trend so far this season: the ‘Cats are never out of any game.

Tebow and the Binghamton Rumble Ponies, 4-3, after what was a back-and-forth affair.

Binghamton struck first, grabbing a run in the second off Jeff McNeil’s home run to right field, but it was a brief lead for the Ponies.

New Hampshire needed just one more inning to tie it up, with Bo Bichette’s seeing-eye single bringing home Juan Kelly in the third.

Another Binghamton home run, a Matt Oberste blast toward the Hilton Garden Inn, would give the visitors back the lead in the fourth, but the run trading would continue.

The Fisher Cats responded half an inning, with Cavan Biggio’s triple putting him in place to be brought home by an Andrew Guillotte bloop single to left.

New Hampshire would leave two men in scoring position and allow Binghamton another chance to take back the lead, which they would do in the fifth thanks to a Peter Alonso line drive to left.

That lead was deleted again half an inning later on another triple, this one by Max Pentecost that brought home Bichette.

Outside of a double by Tebow, neither team could get any offensive output after that point until McNeil added another solo home run in the eighth, this one to right center.

It looked like the Fisher Cats would claw their way back again in the bottom of the eighth as Lourdes Gurriel Jr. began the inning with a blast deep to left, but Tebow’s frozen rope to second would catch Gurriel, stifling the rally.

New Hampshire nearly tied the game one last time in the ninth, but Vladimir Guerrero’s long fly to left center would not be enough to bring Jonathan Davis home from third.

Davis was the ninth runner left on base by the Fisher Cats, the fourth game in a row that happened to the ‘Cats.

“It was kind of like a paper cut game, a paper cut here, a paper cut there, never really a big inning,” said Schneider. “But you take it, you move on, and you go get them tomorrow.”

Tebow would leave the game in the ninth after his second double, making way for pinch runner John Mora. He ended the day 2-for-4 with a strikeout in the second.

Peter Alonso joined Tebow and McNeil in the two-hit club for Binghamton.

For New Hampshire, Gurriel would be credited with a single before being gunned out by Tebow, putting him at two hits on the night along with Biggio and Guillotte. Overall, the ‘Cats ended the game with 10 hits, the fifth time in their first ten games where they have reached the double digit hit threshold.

Harris was on the hook for the loss before Pentecost’s RBI, leaving after five innings allowing seven hits and a walk. Binghamton starting pitcher Marcos Molina left after the fourth, allowing six hits and a pair of walks off his 84 pitches.

The win went to Austin McGeorge (1-0), who recorded four outs in the sixth and seventh. Tyler Bashlor would get his first save after recording the final four outs of the game for Binghamton.

Justin Shafer (1-1) was the hard-luck loser for New Hampshire, finishing things up for them in the eighth and ninth.

Both teams meet again on Wednesday at 6:35 p.m., with Francisco Rios (0-1, 6.14 ERA) taking the mound for New Hampshire against Binghamton’s Joseph Shaw (0-1, 6.00 ERA).