I-Cubs Top Storm Chasers for Third Straight Victory
PAPILLION, NE - The Iowa Cubs (49-68) came out on top of a back-and-forth contest with the Omaha Storm Chasers (64-53) on Thursday at Werner Park, notching an 8-5 victory to extend their winning streak to three games.
The I-Cubs struck first when Zach Davis led off the game with a base hit and scored on Johneshwy Fargas' single, but their lead was short-lived. Iowa starter Matt Swarmer got off to a rough start in the bottom of the first. He surrendered a double to Nick Pratto in-between three walks, including one with the bases loaded, and then a sacrifice fly from MJ Melendez was enough to give Omaha a 2-1 lead after their half of the inning.
The Storm Chasers extended their lead to 3-1 in the second with a solo shot by Nate Esposito, but the I-Cubs didn't wait long before changing the score again. After Andrew Romine reached on an error to lead off the third, the I-Cubs strung together four straight singles to plate three runs and retake the lead, 4-3.
Both starters settled down after that. Omaha starter Foster Griffin retired all of the final six batters he faced, logging one-two-three innings in both the fourth and the fifth. On the other side, Swarmer sent down the last nine batters he faced in order, including four straight strikeouts to finish the third inning and start the fourth.
The scoring started up again as both teams got into their bullpens. The Storm Chasers jumped on Jackson McClelland in the sixth, cashing in on a leadoff walk with an RBI single to tie the game at four runs apiece. The I-Cubs got to Grant Gavin in his second inning of work, too, however. Abiatal Avelino and Brennen Davis hit back-to-back solo home runs in the seventh to give Iowa a 6-4 advantage, the fourth lead change of the game.
Iowa added two more insurance runs in the eighth, including one on a solo homer from Tyler Ladendorf, and though Dylan Coleman shut them down in the ninth, their lead proved enough. Erich Uelmen threw a scoreless eighth, and after surrendering a leadoff homer to Bobby Witt Jr., Aneuris Rosario retired the next three Omaha batters in the ninth to secure an 8-5 victory for the I-Cubs.
Despite his rocky first inning, Matt Swarmer ended his outing with five innings pitched and just three earned runs. He left the game in line for the win, but ended up with no decision.
The I-Cubs hit back-to-back homers for the second straight night and the third time in their last seven games. Prior to that stretch, they'd done it just once this season.
Tyler Ladendorf's homer was his second in as many games. He is the eighth I-Cub this season to homer in back-to-back games.
Brennen Davis collected his third straight multi-hit game, going 2-for-4 with a home run, a walk, two RBI, and two runs scored. The home run was Davis' third in the three games he's played with Iowa so far.
Iowa will face off with Omaha again tomorrow for game four of the six-game series. First pitch between the two teams is scheduled for 7:05. For more information and tickets, visit www.iowacubs.com.
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