CRESTWOOD, IL – The ThunderBolts erased an early deficit with six straight runs in the middle innings to walk away with an 8-4 win and a series victory over the Joliet Slammers at Standard Bank Stadium Thursday night.
The Slammers struck first when Seth Schwindenhammer hit a two-run homer in the top of the fourth inning. Kyle Maunus, who had singled, scored on the homer.
Windy City quickly responded with a three-run fourth. Zach Aakhus and Kyle Robinson hit back-to-back singles and Andrew Brauer drove in Aakhus on a double. Then, with two outs, both Robinson and Brauer crossed the plate on Chase Tucker’s triple, giving the Thunderbolts a 3-2 lead.
They added to it the following inning when Mike Torres hit his third home run of the year. Ryan Soares and Cregar followed with singles and Aakhus walked to load the bases. Robinson hit into a double play, scoring Soares and Cregar scored on a wild pitch, making the score 6-2.
Joliet put up a fight in the eighth, loading the bases with one out on a hit batsman, an error and a walk. Grant DeBruin nearly plated two runs on a double, but the ball that was initially ruled to have landed fair was eventually called foul after an umpires’ conference. DeBruin would fly out. Schwindenhammer didn’t make the inning a waste, though, as he singled home two runs with two outs, making the score 6-4.
The Bolts added two insurance runs in the eighth. Brauer doubled and scored on a balk and Jayce Ray walked, eventually scoring on a Torres single.
The Slammers threatened one more time, loading the bases in the ninth, but Michael Click got the final two outs to secure the victory.
Markus Solbach (3-0) pitched five innings for the win and Shawn Kale (4-3) took the loss.
The ThunderBolts will remain at home to take on the River City Rascals, starting a three-game series on Friday night. Budweiser Fill ‘R Up Friday at Standard Bank Stadium will feature $1.25 draft beers and $2.25 bottles. Matt Wickswat (4-10, 5.09) will start for the Bolts against Tommy Mendoza (4-5, 6.98) for the Rascals. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 and the broadcast can be heard on WXAV, 88.3 FM and wxav.com.
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