The Kenosha Kingfish seemed well on their way to snapping a four-game losing streak Thursday night.
Up 5-0 after the top of the fifth inning in a Northwoods League road game against the Rockford Rivets, and with Wilmot graduate Kyle Gendron cruising on the mound, things were looking good for Kenosha.
Then things went south.
Rockford scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth, two in the bottom of the sixth — after Kenosha scored once in the top of the sixth to go ahead 6-3 — two in the seventh to take the lead for good and one in the eighth for insurance in an 8-6 victory.
With their fifth consecutive loss, the Kingfish — who remain in last place in the first-half standings in the Great Lakes East Division — dropped to 5-12. The Rivets improved to 9-8, a game behind first-place Kokomo.
Designated hitter Ryan Knernschield led Kenosha’s offense Thursday, going 2-for-4 with two doubles and three RBI.
Tremper graduate Mitchell Buban was 2-for-5, while Zachary Nogalski was also 2-for-5 and drove in a run.
Gendron kept Rockford off the board for four innings until the Rivets scored three runs in the fifth. Still, Gendron made it through five innings and was in line for the win. He allowed three runs (two earned) on five hits with a walk and three strikeouts.
Nogalski’s RBI double gave the Kingfish a 6-3 lead in the sixth, but reliever Tanner Fallon (2-1) couldn’t hold it.
The Rivets got within 6-5 in the sixth and took the lead with two runs in the seventh on a wild pitch and an error by catcher Brian Vance.
Rockford added a run in the eighth off another Wilmot product, Troy Hickey.
Second baseman Josh Dudden had a big night for the Rivets, finishing 4-for-5 with a run and an RBI. Nate Schneiderman (1-0) struck out six in two innings of scoreless relief for the win, and Joe Dittmar worked a 1-2-3 ninth for his second save.
The Kingfish return home tonight to start a two-game set against Kokomo at 7:05 p.m.