Belters 6 Bolts 5
CRESTWOOD, IL – The Normal CornBelters scored two runs in the top of the ninth inning to break a tie and beat the ThunderBolts 6-5 at Standard Bank Stadium Sunday night.
The ThunderBolts (11-20) jumped on the board early as Tim Zier singled in the bottom of the first, stole second and scored on an Axel Johnson base hit.
Normal (13-18) grabbed the lead from them in the second on a two-run Chris Iriart double but the ThunderBolts were not deterred and took the lead right back. Ransom LaLonde was hit by a pitch and scored on a Blair Beck double. Omar Obregon tripled home Beck to make it 3-2.
Derrick Loveless’s home run in the third inning tied the score for Normal and they moved back in front in the fourth on an RBI double from Joel Davis.
Normal held that 4-3 lead until the bottom of the seventh inning, when Riley Krane hit a leadoff single. Obregon singled to move him to third and Zier knocked him in. The Bolts put runners at second and third with one out but did not get the go-ahead run in. The previous inning, Johnson had reached third base with no outs but did not score.
Tanner Lubach’s double started the ninth for Normal. Davis dropped down a sacrifice bunt and an errant throw to first allowed Lubach to score while Davis took second. He scored on a Sammy Vega single.
Krane tripled, leading off the bottom of the ninth and scored on a Beck sacrifice fly. Obregon doubled to put the tying run on base with one out, but he was left there.
Nick Bozman (2-0) pitched a perfect eighth for the win and Jack Andersen allowed two runs (one earned) in two innings for the loss. Anthony Herrera picked up the save.
The ThunderBolts head out on the road on Tuesday to take on the Joliet Slammers. Connor Bach (0-0, 6.00) takes the mound for game one of the series from Joliet Route 66 Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 and the broadcast can be heard through wcthunderbolts.com.