Belters 13 Bolts 3
CRESTWOOD, IL – The Normal CornBelters scored five runs in the first inning to open a big lead early on their way to beating the ThunderBolts 13-3 at Standard Bank Stadium Saturday night.
Santiago Chirino’s single started the first-inning rally before he scored on a Derrick Loveless double. Paddy Ledet walked the next two batters to load the bases and hit Joel Davis to bring home the second run. With two outs in the inning, Cody Erickson doubled home all three runners to extend the Normal lead to 5-0.
An Andrew Godbold RBI double the following inning made it 6-0, but the ThunderBolts (11-19) made a game of it with a pair of runs in the fourth. Larry Balkwill walked in front of Jonathan McCray, who hit his first home run, to cut the deficit to four.
Normal (12-18), though, answered the following inning, getting an RBI single from Chris Iriart that chased Ledet from the game.
In the sixth, the CornBelters effectively put the game away with two runs, including an RBI double for Tanner Lubach. Sammy Vega’s two-run single and Justin Fletcher’s two-run double in the eighth inning completed Normal’s scoring.
The Bolts tried to make it interesting in the ninth, scoring a run on a Ransom LaLonde RBI single with two outs. Riley Krane singled and Blair Beck walked, but they left the bases loaded to end the game.
Ryan Lawlor started for Normal and allowed two runs in four innings but did not factor in the decision. George Faue (1-0) picked up his first pro win, throwing three shutout innings of relief. Ledet (2-3) gave up seven runs in four-plus innings for the loss.
The rubber match between the ThunderBolts and the CornBelters is Sunday evening at 5:05. Eddie Avila (0-1, 5.79) will be on the mound for the Bolts against Normal’s Jacinto Garcia (2-1, 4.37). It is Family Day at Standard Bank Stadium presented by JULIE and Animals for Awareness – Palos Park will provide an animal show during the Father’s Day clash. Fans not in attendance can hear the radio broadcast on WXAV 88.3 FM and wxav.com.