CRESTWOOD, IL – The Washington Wild Things scored seven unanswered runs to erase an early deficit and send the Windy City ThunderBolts to their sixth straight loss at Standard Bank Stadium Friday night.
The ThunderBolts were glad to see some production from Chad Cregar, as he homered in the 2nd inning giving Windy City a 1-0 lead. Cregar led the Frontier League in homeruns last year with 31, but hadn’t homered until Friday.
The Wild Things wasted no time in scoring as Washington took the lead in the top of the 3rd. CJ Beatty struck out, but reached first base thanks to a dropped third strike. The next batter Shain Stoner homered to bring home Beatty and put the Wild Things on top 2-1.
Windy City’s starter Travis Strong found his biggest challenge in the 5th inning when Washington pushed more runs across. Four consecutive Wild Thing singles gave Washington two more runs. A sacrifice fly by Nick Akins gave the visiting team a 5-1 lead through five innings.
Jim Vahalik joined in on the fun for Washington as he sent a solo homerun over the left field wall for a 6-1 lead for the Wild Things. Washington would not stop there as they scored one more run in the 7th inning. Beatty led off the inning with a double and Mark Samuelson sacrificed him home by flying out to left field.
Shawn Blackwell (1-2) earned the win, allowing just one run in six innings. Strong (0-2) picked up the loss after going five innings and giving up five runs, four earned on seven hits and a walk. He struck out 12 and the ThunderBolts pitching staff combined for 16 strikeouts.
The ThunderBolts and Wild Things will be back in action on Saturday night for game two at Standard Bank Stadium with a fireworks show scheduled to follow. Travis Tingle (0-1, 5.68) will make his third start for Windy City against Washington’s Michael Hepple (0-0, 2.25). First pitch is set for 6:05. Fans not in attendance can hear the broadcast through wcthunderbolts.com.
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