Privately, the Brainerd Blue Thunder may have wished a power outage would have suspended Tuesday's game at Mills Field.
Without power Brainerd would have averted a 9-5 loss administered by the Alexandria Beetles, the Blue Thunder's fifth loss in six games.
At 8:51 p.m., four light poles went dark, sending the teams to their dugouts for 21 minutes.
Moments before then the Beetles had scored three runs to erase a 2-0 deficit. When play resumed, Alexandria added two runs and was on its way to a Northwoods League victory in stifling humidity.
Alexandria 9, Blue Thunder 5
The key: The Beetles ripped three consecutive doubles in the sixth and scored five runs in the inning.
Records: Alexandria 13-10 second half (27-29 overall), Brainerd 11-12 (25-30)
Next: Mankato vs. Blue Thunder 7:05 p.m. Wednesday at Mills Field.
For five innings Blue Thunder right-hander Matt Robinson stifled Alexandria hitters. He gave up no runs and four hits, struck out one and walked one in that stretch but wound up suffering his first loss of the season in five decisions.
In the sixth, the Beetles began to solve Robinson's offerings as they ripped three consecutive doubles.
Mike Metzger led off the sixth with a double into the left-field corner. Jimmy Bacon drove him in with a double into the right-field corner. Allen Craig followed with yet another double, scoring Bacon. Craig tallied on a bunt single past the mound by Paul Rice.
When the lights came back on and Brandon Magee on the mound in place of Robinson, Jeff Tezak reached on a Brainerd error and wound up scoring on a passed ball.
Rice scored the inning's fifth run, on Robert Dickmann's groundout.
Alexandria added three runs in the seventh on RBI singles by Craig and Rice and a sacrifice fly by Jeff Tezak.
Tezak's RBI single in the ninth gave Alexandria additional breathing room.
Metzger finished 3-for-4 and Rice was 3-for-5. Craig was 2-for-5.
Brainerd first baseman Rodney McMahon was 3-for-5. He doubled in the second, cranked a two-run homer to left-center in the fourth and added a single in the seventh.
Kyle Mura hit a two-run homer in the eighth for the final Brainerd runs.
Brainerd's Chad Weiss had a spectacular night in left field. In the third he made a long running catch in the corner, bouncing off the fence. In the seventh he slid glove first to catch Tezak's line drive, which turned out to be a sacrifice fly.
In the seventh, Weiss drove in Brainerd's third run with a single to right. His hit loaded the bases before Alexandria reliever Darren Coltrinari struck out pinch hitter Tim Henry for the third out.
Weiss, Joe Tautges and Dan Quinn had two hits apiece for the Blue Thunder.
Left-hander Drew Saberhagen, son of former major league pitcher Brett Saberhagen, went 6 1/3 innings for Alexandria, giving up three earned runs and nine hits. He struck out six, walked just two and got the win.
Blue Thunder loses duo
Brainerd was without two of its better players, Brennan Garr and Chris Gradoville.
Gradoville, a catcher/outfielder from Creighton University, suffered a deep bone bruise in his shin. He played in 29 games, hitting .238, after playing in the College World Series.
Garr, a pitcher/third baseman from Northern Colorado, was forced to return home to undergo knee surgery. Garr, a Northwoods League All-Star, batted .287 in 46 games and was 1-0 in eight relief appearances.
Alexandria 000 005 301 -- 9 12 4
Brainerd 000 200 120 -- 5 11 1
Alexandria-Drew Saberhagen, Darren Coltrinari (7), Mike Hoelscher (9) and Matt Rademacher. Brainerd-Matt Robinson, Brandon Magee (6), Jon Leines (8), John Frawley (9) and Lars Davis. W-Saberhagen (3-1). L-Robinson (4-1).
2B-Alex, Mike Metzger, Jimmy Bacon, Allen Craig; Brd, Rodney McMahon, Davis. HR-Brd, McMahon, Kyle Mura. SB-Alex, Metzger; Brd, Jerad Head. Sac-Alex, Jason Cooper, Bacon, Jeff Tezak. RBI-Alex, Bacon, Craig 2, Tezak 2, Paul Rice 2, Robert Dickmann; Brd, McMahon 2, Chad Weiss, Mura 2. LOB-Alex 5, Brd 9. DP-Brd 1. Time -- 3:38.
MIKE BIALKA can be reached at email@example.com or at 855-5861.
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