Gary SouthShore 2, Sioux Falls 1
Gary SouthShore rode an excellent start from Morgan Coombs (pictured) to defeat visiting Sioux Falls, 2-1, and maintain its two-game lead over Lincoln in the wild-card race.
The RailCats got on the board early, building a 1-0 lead as RF Mike Massaro doubled home LF Adam Klein in the first. From there, things stayed quiet until the bottom of the eighth, when Massaro again drove home Klein, this time with a one-out single.
The run proved to be important, as the Canaries loaded the bases with one out in the ninth. LF J.P. Ramirez made it a 2-1 game with a sacrifice fly, but RailCats closer Ian Durham retired the game’s final batter to preserve the win.
Coombs (5-2) pitched eight and one-third innings, allowing one run on five hits while fanning ten Canaries. Sioux Falls starter Kyle Vasquez (2-3) got the loss but pitched well, throwing six innings and giving up just one run on three hits, striking out nine.
Massaro and Gary CF Drew Martinez were the only players on either team with multiple hits, both registering a pair of base knocks.
Lincoln 4, Rockland 0
Lincoln starter Mike Burns was brilliant, twirling a complete-game three hitter as the host Saltdogs blanked Rockland of the Can-Am League, 4-0.
Lincoln tallied a pair of runs in the first on 1B Curt Smith‘s two-run homer, then two more in the third on 3B Bryan Pounds‘ RBI double and C Tyler Goodro‘s run-scoring single.
It was more than enough for Burns (7-4), who fanned seven Boulders on the afternoon. Charlie Law (2-3) took the loss for Rockland, allowing two earned runs on seven hits in five innings of work, striking out seven.
Pounds and Goodro both went 2-for-4 to lead the Saltdogs’ offense.
Wichita 3, Fargo-Moorhead 2
In the three-game set pitting the league’s best teams, Wichita took the rubber game, edging visiting Fargo-Moorhead, 3-2.
The Wingnuts drew first blood with Jake Kahaulelio‘s first-inning solo home run, then increased their lead to 3-0 on Jared McDonald‘s two-run triple in the fourth.
The RedHawks finally got on the board in the sixth via Nic Jackson‘s two-run dinger, but a quartet of Wichita relievers shut down Fargo-Moorhead over the final three innings to preserve the victory.
In his first start of the season for the Wingnuts, James Giulettie (1-0) picked up the win, striking out eight hitters in six innings of work while giving up just two hits. Ethan Opsahl (1-2) pitched six innings for the RedHawks, allowing five runs and fanning three.
Winnipeg 3, Kansas City 1
After threatening all afternoon, Winnipeg finally broke through with a three-run eighth to notch a 3-1 victory over Kansas City.
The T-Bones scored the game’s first run in the seventh, taking advantage of an error by Goldeyes RF Fehlandt Lentini to score C Trevor Coleman.
Having stranded runners on base in each of the first six innings, Winnipeg put things together in the eighth inning, using an RBI double from SS Josh Mazzola and RBI singles by 1B Casey Haerther and C Luis Alen.
Jackson pitched seven and two-thirds innings, giving up just one unearned run on five hits while striking out 11. Nevertheless, the win went to Goldeyes reliever Brendan Lafferty (4-2), while Chris Kissock pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his first save. Sean Toler (2-4) took the loss in relief for Kansas City.
Mazzola, Hearther and Alen each had two hits for the Goldeyes, while Coleman and 2B Anthony Davis both had a pair of base knocks for the T-Bones.