The Rockford RiverHawks scored three runs in the top of the seventh inning to come from behind and defeat the Windy City ThunderBolts 5-3.
Rockford cracked the scoreboard in the first inning with an unearned run. With a runner on third and two outs, Robert Sabates singled past a diving Nate Hall at third base to plate Mike Goetz for a 1-0 RiverHawks edge.
The ThunderBolts battled back and scored a pair in the bottom of the third. Vinnie Scarduzio singled to lead things off and moved to second on a groundout by Gilberto Mejia. With two outs, Tyler Farrar recorded his first hit on the season with a single to left to score Scarduzio and tie the game. Not content to stay at first, Farrar stole second and moved to third on a throwing error by catcher Ben Blumenthal. Mike Sullivan then caught the RiverHawks defense off guard with a perfect bunt down the third base line for a single, scoring Farrar for a 2-1 Bolts lead.
Rockford tied the game in the top of the fourth on an RBI double from Ross McCoy. After the ThunderBolts took the lead in the bottom of the sixth inning on an RBI double from Bryan Cook, The RiverHawks came right back in the top of the seventh with a three-spot, keyed by a big two-run double from Robbie Knapp, his third double of the game to take a 5-3 advantage.
A trio of ‘Bolts pitchers were able to hold Rockford at bay in the eighth and ninth, but Windy City was unable to cash in on the RiverHawks bullpen as Jose Mateo pitched a scoreless seventh and eighth. John Muller worked a perfect ninth for his second save of the season.
The bullpen work came in support of Brett Durand (1-0) who went six innings, allowing three runs, two earned, walking none and striking out six. Adam Dominick (0-2) took the loss for Windy City.
Offensively, Mike Sullivan had a nice game for Windy City going 3-for-4 with a double, an RBI and a run scored.
In the series finale, Lansing’s Shane Zegarac will start for the ThunderBolts against Rob Neigebauer for Rockford. Sunday is a Standard Bank Sunday. For information or tickets, call 708-489-BALL stop by the Standard Bank Stadium ticket office or go to the team’s website at www.wcthunderbolts.com.