LA PORTE - Facing a tough weeknight match-up on the road, things went about as well as they could for the New Carlisle Newts on Thursday at Magic Park.
New Carlisle split the opening games of the 2019 ORWBL World Series, 9-14, 15-13.
The Series got off to a rocky start for the Newts, as the offense struggled against Magic starting pitcher Caleb Jonkman. New Carlisle put several men on base in the early innings, but could not drive them in.
On the mound, Garrett Curless did everything he could to keep his team in the game, but the lack of run support was too much to overcome.
In Game 2, Curless shut down the Magic offense for three innings, while the bats finally came alive for New Carlisle. The Newts took a 12-2 lead into the bottom of the fourth before things got interesting.
Maple City scored six in the fourth to cut it to 12-8. By the time the sixth inning rolled around, the lead was down to 13-10.
In the final frame, the Newts tacked on two insurance runs to give Curless a five-run cushion.
The Magic scored three quick runs to get within 15-13, and put two runners on with just one out. John Arndt and Shane Anderson each represented the winning run at the plate, but Curless retired both to send the Series back home, tied 1-1.
New Carlisle now has the home field "advantage" with three of the possible five remaining games to be played at Migley Field. However, the confines have not been all that friendly this year, as the home team posted a 5-7 record in the regular season.
Maple City, on the other hand, won 11 of 12 on the road in the regular season and is fresh off a three-game road sweep of the Billy Goats in the American League Championship Series.
Action picks back up this Sunday, with Game 3 beginning at 1pm ET at Migley Field. Should neither team win all three in New Carlisle, the Series will conclude in La Porte on Sunday, August 18.