SIOUX FALLS, SD -- The Sioux Falls Canaries’ early offense Saturday night wasn’t enough to survive a Wichita Winguts comeback, and the Canaries fell 7-5.

Wichita has taken the first two games of the series and won five in a row, while the Birds have dropped five of their last six.

The Canaries (5-11) built an early 3-0 lead in the second inning off Winguts starter and former big leaguer Jon Link (3-1). Tim Pahuta laced a single to right center field past a drawn-in infield to plate Jared Clark, who led off the frame with a double.

Jake Taylor later launched a two-out, two-run home run off the centerfield scoreboard.

Canaries starter Jordan Whatcott (0-4) fell into trouble in the fourth inning by walking three men. Two runs came home on a bases-loaded walk and an RBI groundout.  But Canaries first baseman John Alonso hit a solo home run, his second in as many days and third of the year, to give the Canaries a 4-2 lead.

Wichita (10-5) answered with a five-run comeback, overtaking the Birds with three runs in the sixth inning. David Amberson doubled in a run, and Derek Perren scored on reliever Austin Brough’s wild pitch. Jared McDonald’s sacrifice fly followed and gave the Wingnuts the lead for good.  Wichita pushed across singletons in the seventh and eighth innings, the latter on Abel Nieves’ solo home run.

Pahuta provided a two-out, run-scoring single in the eighth inning, to bring the Canaries to 7-5, but Wichita closer Josh Dew tossed a perfect ninth inning for his second save of the series and third of the year.

Link earned the win, allowing four runs and seven hits in seven innings while striking out seven.  Whatcott suffered his fourth loss in as many starts, allowing five runs and seven hits across 5 1/3 innings.

Pahuta and Taylor each had two hits and two RBI to pace the Canaries offense.

The finale of the three-game series is 1:05 p.m. on Sunday at the Birdcage.

Courtesy:  Sioux Falls Canaries