Miners 3 Bolts 0
MARION, IL – Niko Vasquez hit a three-run homer in the tenth to break a scoreless tie, sending the Southern Illinois Miners to a 3-0 walk-off win over the ThunderBolts at Rent One Park Friday night.
Daniel Cropper and Matt Bywater started the game for Windy City and Southern Illinois respectively and neither pitcher allowed much. Kyle Robinson doubled for the Bolts in the first but was left at second and base and was the last baserunner for Windy City until the eighth inning. In between, Bywater retired 20 consecutive men.
Cropper, meanwhile found himself in several early jams, but pitched out of them, leaving runners at second and third in the second and getting a key double play with runners at the corners in the third. Cropper would allow his last hit in the fifth as he got better as the game progressed.
Cropper went a total of seven innings, allowing six hits and no walks.
Bywater finally found himself in trouble again in the eighth when Max White doubled and Michael Allen walked, but no one scored. Bywater departed after the eighth with eight strikeouts and only two hits allowed.
The Miners broke the scoreless tie in the bottom of the tenth. Daniel Carela walked the first two hitters and, with one out, he fell behind Vasquez 2-0 before the Southern Illinois second baseman hit a long home run to left to clear the bases and win the game.
Derrick Miramontes (3-1) pitched a perfect tenth for the win and Carela (1-2) took the loss.
The ThunderBolts continue their six-game road trip on Saturday, beginning a three-game set against the Gateway Grizzlies. Jake Fisher (4-8, 4.75) will get the start for the Bolts against Southern Illinois’s Matt Bywater (6-3, 2.41). First pitch from GCS Ballpark is scheduled for 7:05 and the broadcast can be heard on WXAV 88.3 FM and wxav.com.