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Cunningham's Strong Start Leads Miners to Victory

May 28, 2019 - Frontier League (FL) - Southern Illinois Miners News Release

Marion, IL - The Southern Illinois Miners won their second game in a row on Tuesday night at Rent One Park thanks to an outstanding start by Chase Cunningham in his Miners home debut, scoring six runs in the first three innings to take a 6-2 decision over the River City Rascals.

The Miners got the lead almost immediately against the Rascals' Alex Winkelman (1-2), as Bryant Flete led off the first inning with a single and stole second base. He ended up going to third on the same play when the ball was thrown into center field by River City catcher Tanner Murphy for the first of five errors by the Rascals in the game. Gianfranco Wawoe then knocked Flete in with a base hit to center field, making it 1-0 Southern Illinois.

The Miners then loaded the bases with two outs in that inning, including Andy Cosgrove reaching on a Winkelman throwing error, and Chris Iriart popped up to the first baseman Nolan Meadows, who dropped the ball for the third error of the inning, allowing two more runs to score for a 3-0 Miners lead.

After Winkelman worked around the fourth error of the game for a scoreless second inning for River City, the Miners again loaded the bases in the third with one out, and Wawoe hit a ground ball to the shortstop Artemis Kadkhodaian, who booted if for yet another error and made the score 4-0 Miners. Stephen Lohr then chased Winkelman from the game with a two-run single after an eight-pitch at-bat, extending the lead to 6-0 after three innings.

That was more than Cunningham (1-2) needed, as he did not allow a base-runner until the third inning, held the Rascals hitless for five and two-thirds innings, and ended up lasting seven frames, permitting two runs on four hits with a pair of walks and six strikeouts, earning his first Miners win in the process while pitching six or more innings for the third straight start.

Lohr and Wawoe had two RBIs apiece for Southern Illinois, while Lohr and Flete each had a two-hit game for the victorious Miners. Now back above .500 at 8-7, they will look to take the series and win a third straight game on Wednesday night against the Rascals at 6:35 p.m., with Marty Anderson making his Rent One Park debut as a Miner on the mound against River City right-hander Jason Zgardowski.

The Southern Illinois Miners are the Frontier League's most-successful franchise since debuting in 2007, winning the 2012 Frontier League Championship as well as division titles in 2010, 2014, 2015 and 2016. They have been awarded the Frontier League Organization of the Year award three times since their inception, and also set a new Frontier League attendance record in their inaugural season. For ticket information, contact the box office at (618) 998-8499. For additional information, visit our website at

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