Inland Empire Drops Opener at Lake Elsinore 6-4
Lake Elsinore, CA- The Inland Empire 66ers of San Bernardino dropped the opener of a its final series of 2021 with a 6-4 loss at The Diamond in Lake Elsinore. The 66ers chiseled away at an early 4-1 deficit to tie the game in the seventh but a pair of solo homers pushed Lake Elsinore (51-64) to the win.
The 66ers grabbed a 1-0 lead in the first on Kevin Watson Jr.'s RBI single against Storm starter Levi Thomas. The Storm got to work right away against Sixers' southpaw Jose Salvador in the bottom of the first as after a pair of singles to open the inning, Salvador hit Lucas Dunn with a pitch to load the bags. He then walked Cole Cummings to bring home a run and tie the game. Gilberto Vizcarra followed by drilling a double off the wall in left and clearing the bases as his three-run two-bagger made it 4-1 Lake Elsinore. Salvador settled down after that and allowed just a bunt single and a walk over his next four frames to keep the 66ers (55-57) in the game. The Sixers chiseled into the lead in the second when Jose Reyes tripled and came home on Starlin Gill's RBI grounder. The Sixers added another run in the fifth on a RBI walk by Kevin Watson Jr. making it a 4-3 game. Inland Empire tied the game 4-4 in the seventh when Reyes delivered a RBI single to right off Ethan Routzahn (3-0). The Storm immediately took the lead back in the home half of the frame when Cole Cummings lifted a solo homer to right against Sixers righty Andrew Peters. The homer was the UC Santa Barbara product's second with the Storm and made it 5-4. Peters (2-3) took the loss but struck six batters out in two frames. The Storm added an insurance run in the eighth on Jack Stronach's solo homer, his fifth dinger of the year. Jason Reynolds tossed two scoreless frames to pick up his fourth save of the year. Vizcarra had three hits for the Storm. Jose Guzman and Reyes each had two hits for the Sixers.
The series continues Wednesday at 6:35. The contest can be seen and heard live on 66ers.com.
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