Frontier League

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Big sixth inning dooms ThunderBolts in 9-4 loss

Miners 9 Bolts 4

MARION, IL – The Southern Illinois Miners scored six runs in the sixth inning to deal the ThunderBolts their third straight loss, 9-4 at Rent One Park Wednesday night.

In the opener of a six-game road trip, the Bolts fell behind early when Southern Illinois mounted a two-out rally in the second. Aaron Gates singled and Steve Marino walked before Jay Austin’s base hit scored Gates.

They added a run in the fourth in similar fashion. With two outs, Gates walked and Marino doubled. Austin’s single scored Gates for a 2-0 Miners lead. Niko Vasquez made it 3-0 with a sacrifice fly in the fourth after Jon Eisen had singled and moved up on an error and a wild pitch.

The ThunderBolts tried to make things interesting in the sixth when Kyle Robinson led off with a single and Ryan McIntyre followed with a two-run homer to cut the deficit to one.

The bottom of the sixth, though, spelled the ThunderBolts’ doom. Eight consecutive Miners reached base to start the inning, they finished the frame with six runs on four hits (two on the infield) and four walks. RBIs came from Phil Butler, Ryan Cavan, Niko Vasquez, Frank Martinez and Marino.

Windy City tried to chip away, scoring a run in each of the next two innings, but it wasn’t enough. They came up with three hits in the seventh and scored a run on a Robinson fielder’s choice. They got one in the eighth on a Garrett Carey sacrifice fly, but they could not score in the ninth. Despite outhitting the Miners 11-9, the Bolts left a total of nine men on base.

Rick Teasley (8-2) pitched five shutout innings for the win and Josh Spence (0-7) allowed four runs (three earned) in five innings for the loss. Steve Hagen earned his first save, throwing the final three innings.

The ThunderBolts and Miners will continue their series with game two on Thursday night. Hein Robb (0-0, 0.00) will get the start for the Bolts against Southern Illinois’s Miguel Ramirez (6-4, 3.99). First pitch from Rent One Park is scheduled for 7:05 and the broadcast can be heard on WXAV 88.3 FM and wxav.com.

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