EVANSVILLE, IN – Tyler Vail threw a complete game and Josh Allen hit two home runs for the Evansville Otters, who defeated the Windy City ThunderBolts 5-2 at Bosse Field Tuesday night.
Evansville (23-18) jumped on the board just two batters into the game. John Schultz doubled and Allen singled. Schultz initially stopped at third base but scored when Coco Johnson bobbled the ball in left field.
The ThunderBolts (22-18) responded immediately as Reggie Lawson singled with one out in the second. Corey Bass followed with a two-run homer, his fifth of the year, making the score 2-1.
That lead was also short-lived. Jake Fisher had retired six straight batters with four strikeouts after the Allen single in the first, but Kolten Yamaguchi was hit by a pitch with one out in the third. Two batters later, Allen hit a two-run home run and the Otters never trailed again.
Vail settled in after a Blair Beck single led off the third. He retired the next 13 batters, including a stretch of eight straight strikeouts. At one point, he retired four straight batters on strikes, using just 12 pitches.
The Otters put the game away in the seventh. Schultz singled on the infield, chasing Fisher from the game. Against Brian Loconsole, Allen hit his second home run of the night to make the score 5-2.
Vail (2-1) finished off the ThunderBolts with a perfect ninth inning and finished the game with 11 strikeouts and just four hits allowed as he threw his first career complete game in the win. Fisher pitched well in defeat, allowing four runs (three earned) in 6.2 innings and striking out nine of his own.
The ThunderBolts continue their six-game road trip on Tuesday with game two in Evansville. Ryan Strombom (3-3, 5.35) will start game two for the Bolts against the Otters’ Preston Olson (1-1, 3.00). First pitch from Bosse Field is scheduled for 6:35 and the game broadcast can be heard on WXAV 88.3 FM and wxav.com.
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