By John Bohnenkamp
Jalen Borders’ night was full of silence, but time and pitches were running out.
The Cape Catfish starting pitcher was closing in on the Prospect League’s 95-pitch limit with one out in the seventh inning of Thursday’s game against the Burlington Bees at Community Field.
The last hitter Borders faced, Mason Land, finally got to him for the Bees’ first hit of the night.
The no-hitter gone, and the pitch tank empty, Borders left the game.
And the Bees nearly rallied.
Burlington struck for four runs in the seventh inning and had the tying run at the plate, but couldn’t finish the rally in a 10-5 loss in a game delayed almost an hour because of lightning in the area.
The Bees (12-12) fell 1 1/2 games behind the Normal CornBelters in the Great River Division.
The Catfish (14-11) scored five runs off Bees starting pitcher Chas Sagedahl in the first inning and added two in the second, and with Borders keeping Burlington hitters off the bases other than two walks and an error, it looked like there wouldn’t be much of a threat other than the thunderstorms approaching.
But Burlington’s offense awakened after Land’s hit. Reliever Landen Comer struck out Zane Zielinski for the second out of the inning, but Parker Rowland singled, Austin Simpson walked, and then Land scored on Ben Nippolt’s fielder’s choice.
The Bees added three more runs in the inning on Marcos Sanchez’s bases-loaded walk and Reid Halfacre’s two-run single, but with runners on first and second Jackson Jones grounded out to end the inning.
The game was stopped at that point because of lightning, but resumed almost an hour later as more flashes lit up the sky.
The Catfish scored three runs in the eighth to break open the game, then the Bees added a run in the ninth on Halfacre’s ground out that scored pinch runner Brady Jurgella.
SITTING IT OUT: Bees manager Gary McClure was suspended by the league for the game after his ejection from Wednesday’s game.
Assistant coach Owen Oreskovich was in charge of the team.
UP NEXT: The Bees play host to Springfield in Friday’s 6:30 p.m. game.
Photo: Mason Land gets the Burlington Bees’ first hit of the game in the seventh inning. (Steve Cirinna/Burlington Bees)