NEW CARLISLE- Just two weeks ago, the New Carlisle Newts took the first two games in resounding fashion against Granger to move within one game of first place in the National League. Despite the Panthers winning the series finale, the Newts felt pretty confident they had turned the corner on another slow start to the ORWBL regular season.
Unfortunately, New Carlisle hasn't won a game since.
After being swept away in last week's interleague series with Maple City, the Newts (7-11) returned home to a rain-soaked Migley Field and lost all three games to the Saugany Lake Landsharks, 2-5, 2-6, 8-9.
The Landsharks struck first in game one when Levi Miller singled home Colton Boren in the second inning. But New Carlisle's Garrett Curless immediately answered in the bottom half with a solo home run to right.
Saugany Lake scored the following inning on a Mikey Smith home run, and again Curless retaliated with another solo shot to tie it at 2.
In the fifth, Boren homered to left center to give the Landsharks a 3-2 lead to which they would tack on two more insurance runs for the final 5-2 tally.
In game two, the Landsharks jumped out in front early with three runs in the first. Kody Webb hit a solo home run, while Smith added a two-run dinger.
Sean Touhey and Chayse Davis each homered for the Newts, who cut the deficit to 4-2 heading into the fourth. Smith and Kadin Abegg made sure the Newts wouldn't get any closer though. They each homered to make it 6-2, while the Newts bats were silent the rest of the way.
Looking to salvage something in the series finale, the Newts responded to a pair of first inning runs by Saugany Lake with a five spot in the bottom half of the opening inning. Matt Went homered twice in the inning, while Davis added his second of the day. Curless hit a two-run shot as well, and New Carlisle was up 5-2.
Saugany Lake chipped away with one in the second, but the Newts carried a 5-3 lead into the fourth when things fell apart once again. A couple of two-run home runs by Webb and Abegg swung the score to a 7-5 advantage for Saugany Lake.
Solo home runs by Went and Curless eventually tied the game up. In the bottom of the fifth, Went hit his fourth long ball of the game to put the Newts in position to steal a game. But the Landsharks rallied in the sixth and flipped the score once again to 9-8, and the Newts went in order in the bottom half to cap off the sweep.
The seven-game skid is the longest for the Newts since 2012. New Carlisle will look to regroup over the All-Star Break next weekend before returning to action again arch-rival Rolling Prairie on June 24.
Despite the disappointing record, the Newts have still managed to place five players on the National League All-Star team: Koby Keck (12th appearance), Garrett Curless (10th appearance), Scott Soos (7th appearance), Jay Ryans (5th appearance), and Matt Soos (2nd appearance) will represent New Carlisle.
The All-Star festivities are scheduled to begin at 6:00pm ET on Saturday, June 16 at Migley Field in New Carlisle.