TRAVERSE CITY, MI – The ThunderBolts scored three runs in the first inning and never trailed as they completed a sweep of the Traverse City Beach Bums with their fifth straight win, 6-4 at Wuerfel Park Sunday evening.
The first four batters of the game reached for the ThunderBolts (25-20) as Keenyn Walker singled and Coco Johnson doubled in front of a Kyle Wood two-run double. Larry Balkwill singled Wood in to make it 3-0.
They added single runs in the second and third. Wood came up with another RBI double to make the score 4-0 and Corey Bass contributed the RBI for the fifth run, singling home Tim Zier, who had doubled.
The Beach Bums (18-26) scored their first run in the third inning. With two on and one out, Will Kengor hit a fly to left field that Coco Johnson misplayed to score a run. Traverse City tightened the score to 5-2 with a run in the fifth. Arby Fields singled and later scored on a Steven Patterson RBI double.
The Bolts made it a 6-2 game in the top of the sixth as Ransom LaLonde and Blair Beck hit back-to-back singles, putting runners at the corners with no outs. Walker brought home LaLonde with a groundout.
Clay Chapman cruised through eight innings but was not able to finish the complete game as Traverse City made things interesting in the ninth. John Montgomery hit an RBI double and advanced to third on a Zach Files single before Brian Loconsole was called out of the bullpen. Loconsole got Fields and Jeff DeBlieux to ground out to make it a 6-4 final, earning his 17th save.
Chapman (2-4) allowed four runs (three earned) in 8.1 innings for the win and Reinaldo Lopez (1-5) gave up six runs in 5.1 innings for the loss.
The ThunderBolts continue their five-game road trip on Monday with game one against the Gateway Grizzlies. Zac Westcott (4-3, 6.75) gets the start for the Bolts against Gateway’s Will Anderson (1-5, 5.36). First pitch from GCS Ballpark is set for 6:35 and the broadcast can be heard on WXAV 88.3 FM and wxav.com.
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