FLORENCE, KY – The ThunderBolts were held to one run on four hits by a trio of Florence Freedom pitchers as the ThunderBolts fell 3-1 to drop the series to Florence at UC Health Stadium Thursday night.
The Freedom (48-45) opened the scoring with two runs in the second inning. Andrew Godbold doubled and scored on a groundout and they added another on three straight two-out singles.
The ThunderBolts (40-53) gave an immediate answer as Coco Johnson hit his ninth home run of the season and his second of the series to make it 2-1.
Godbold struck again in the bottom of the inning, increasing the Freedom lead back to two. He singled in Austin Newell, who had doubled earlier in the inning.
Both offenses flourished early in the game, but the ThunderBolts could not capitalize on two doubles. They stranded three men at third base in the game.
Pitching dominated after the third as both Jeremy Gooding and Jake Fisher settled in. Fisher threw three perfect innings among his final four and retired 12 of the last 14 batters he faced. He allowed three total runs in seven innings. Gooding was just as good. He and a pair of Florence relievers allowed just one hit after the third inning.
Fisher (5-7) struck out six to move his season total over 100, but took the loss while Gooding (8-4) earned the win, allowing just one run in seven innings. Ed Kohout worked a perfect ninth inning, striking out two for the save.
The ThunderBolts will head to Washington on Friday to complete the season with a three-game series against the Washington Wild Things. Austin Wright (5-11, 4.20) will start game one for the Bolts against Washington’s Matt Fraudin (3-2, 2.95). First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 from CONSOL Energy Park and the broadcast can be heard on WXAV 88.3 FM and wxav.com.