IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI) - Chukars needed a win Thursday night to have a chance at coming back to win the northern division in the first half of the season, and Idaho Falls certainly played like it needed a win, toppling Ogden 18-3. The Chukars' bats were hot from the get-go and they didn't let up until they had a comfortable lead, which is hard to get in the Pioneer League.
Following a hitless, four-strikeout game Wednesday night, Kona Quiggle bounced back and then some. Quiggle opened the scoring with a bases-clearing, three-run double to give the Chukars a 3-0 lead in the first. After Ogden tied the game with three runs in the third, Quiggle responded in the bottom of the inning with a three-run moonshot to right field to make it 6-3 Chukars.
The night only got better for Idaho Falls. Hunter Hisky slapped his first home run of the season to left field for a 7-3 Chukars lead.
Then, in the fifth inning, the Chukars essentially took the Raptors out of the game completely. Quiggle drove in another run with an RBI double to start the inning. Tyler Van Marter added on with a two-run triple to make it 10-3 Idaho Falls.
A Steve Barmakian RBI single and a Webb Little two-run home run kept the scoring going in the fifth. Andrew Don also laced an RBI double in the inning.
Quiggle tallied another RBI with a run-scoring single, his second RBI hit of the inning. Quiggle finished the night 4-5 with two doubles, a home run, and eight RBI.
The Chukars ended up scoring eleven runs in the fifth inning to cap the scoring, winning the game 18-3. Nick Floyd picked up his second win of the season thanks to a solid six innings of work allowing only three runs and plenty of run support. Reza Aleaziz was handed his fourth loss of the season for Ogden.
The Chukars scored a win they needed, but they still trail Missoula atop the northern division by a game after the Paddleheads won a slugfest over Billings 16-13 Thursday night.
For the Chukars to win the northern division in the first half of the season, they will need a win Friday night against Ogden and a Missoula loss to Billings. That would tie the Chukars with the Paddleheads and idaho Falls holds the tiebreaker. First pitch for the Chukars and Raptors Friday night at Melaleuca Field is at 7:15 p.m.