SOUTH BEND – Just a few days ago, it looked as though the South Bend Cubs would easily clinch a playoff berth. With one game left in the first half of the Midwest League, all of a sudden the Cubs are finding themselves in a playoff.
A 6-4 loss to Lake County Saturday night landed the Cubs and West Michigan both into a tie for first place in the Eastern division, South Bend at 40-28 and West Michigan at 39-27. Lake County at 40-29, the extra loss placing the Captains a half-game back of the two teams tied atop the division.
Donnie Dewees hit a solo homer to open the bottom of the ninth to draw the Cubs even at 4-4, but Lake County had RBIs in the 10th from Martin Cervenka and Anthony Miller to retake the lead. South Bend put two on in the bottom of the inning, but Kieran Lovegrove got Tyler Alamo to line out to end the game.
Ian Rice hit a two-run homer and PJ Higgins also drove in a run for South Bend, which finds itself needing to win Sunday against Lake County to get into the playoff as one of the top two teams in the division. West Michigan lost, 7-6, at Lansing Saturday night.
South Bend will host Lake County at 2:05 p.m. Sunday with a playoff spot on the line in the final game of the first half of the Midwest League season.