River City Dominates Miners
The River City Rascals (18-17) scored eight unanswered runs en route to an 8-2 victory over the Southern Illinois Miners (14-21) Wednesday afternoon in front of a season high 3, 807 fans at CarShield Field.
The win snapped a three game losing streak and the Rascals avoided falling under the .500 mark for the first time in two weeks.
The game didn't start out the way the home team wanted it to though as the opponent struck first against Rascals starter Reese Gregory. With one out and a runner on first, Miners third baseman Ryan Lashley clubbed the team's fourth two-run home run of the series and put his team on top 2-0.
Gregory halted the Miners offense right there and went on to toss a stellar outing and earned his third win of the year which is tied for the team lead.
Following the long ball, Gregory allowed just four hits the remainder of the day and finished with a line of eight innings, allowing two runs, earned, on six hits and struck out three.
"Early on they were attacking and putting good swings on the ball," Gregory said. "It caused us to rethink the game plan and then we started to mix up the pitches more and try to keep them off balance as much as possible."
"Reese being able to shut down the scoring after the two-run shot was huge," manager Steve Brook said. "They had won four straight coming into today and after pounding us last night with home runs they came right back at it in their first opportunity. I even said before the game the way we were going to win is if we don't give up home runs and although we gave up one, it wasn't three like last night."
His offense picked him up in the third inning and he was able to pitch with the lead from then on. On the mound for the Miners was southpaw Kody Knaus and he walked Johnny Morales to begin the third. Merjano followed that up with a single that got Morales to third and then a balk on Knaus allowed Morales to score the Rascals first run of the game.
Merjano also moved over to third due to the mistake and then another quality at-bat by Jimmy Kerrigan resulting in a sacrifice fly tied the game at two.
Josh Silver and Braxton Martinez followed that up with back-to-back singles and then an error on Miners second baseman Brett Wiley brought in Silver which would go on to be the winning run.
Knaus would only face one more batter the rest of his start and it would be Josh Ludy who recorded a RBI double for his first of three hits.
Knaus would go on to take the loss allowing four runs, earned, on six hits and walked two in 2.2 innings.
The Rascals took that 4-1 lead and piled up more runs later in the game highlighted by a two-run home run from Brandon Thomas in the sixth inning, his fourth round tripper of the year.
The home run was against Miners reliever Austin Dubsky and he finished his outing being tagged for three earned runs after a RBI single from Jimmy Kerrigan. Righty John Lollar gave up the eighth and final run due to a RBI double from Johnny Morales in the seventh inning, which gave him two hits on the afternoon.
In total, the Rascals tallied 14 hits, three away from their season high of 17 set back on June 6th against Washington.
Leading the way was Josh Ludy with three hits and then four other players had a pair: Josh Silver, Clint Freeman, Jimmy Kerrigan and Johnny Morales. The first of Silver's two hits was a double and it extended his hitting streak to a team high 21 games.
"I think as the season goes on and the more at-bats you get you begin to get really comfortable and I feel like as a team we are getting to that point in the season where more and more people are hitting the ball well on a more consistent basis," hitting coach and catcher Josh Ludy said.
The victory sets up the rubber match on Thursday and the Rascals have a chance to improve to 5-1 in series played at home. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m
• Discuss this story on the Frontier League message board...
Frontier League Stories from June 25, 2017
- Beach Bums Get Comeback Win against Crushers - Traverse City Beach Bums
- Traverse City D. Lake Erie Crushers, 6-3 - Lake Erie Crushers
- Washington Takes Series from Boomers - Schaumburg Boomers
- Slammers Break out Brooms, Sweep ThunderBolts - Joliet Slammers
- ThunderBolts Suffer Sweep in Joliet - Windy City ThunderBolts
- Rascals Squander Chances in Extra-Inning Loss - River City Rascals
- River City Dominates Miners - River City Rascals
The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.