08/29/2014 10:59 PM
Lincoln, NE-The Explorers scored first for a second straight game but the Saltdogs put together a total of ten runs over three straight innings and eventually won 11-4 Friday night at Haymarket Park.
Sioux City (46-52) is now 2-4 in the season series against Lincoln with two games remaining. The Saltdogs (53-45) stayed a half-game in front of Gary SouthShore for first place in the Central Division. The RailCats have a chance to move back into a virtual tie if they win at Winnipeg Saturday. Lincoln and Sioux City will not play Saturday due to a University of Nebraska football game.
The Explorers opened the scoring with a single mark in the second. Brock Kjeldgaard led off the inning with a walk. Peter Barrows was hit by a pitch. Tom Mendonca reached on a fielder’s choice attempting a sac bunt. Kjeldgaard then scored from third on a fielder’s choice ground ball by Amos Ramon.
Lincoln launched into the lead with a three-run third. With one out, Tyler Smith walked. Chad Mozingo reached on a bunt single. Luis Nunez singled to left and loaded the bases. Matt Forgatch then doubled to score all three runners for a 3-1 lead. The Saltdogs added four more in the fourth. Jeremy Hamilton led off the inning with a single to right on a soft liner. After a strikeout, Mike Gilmartin singled to right. Smith walked to load the bases. A single from Mozingo made it 4-1. Luis Nunez drove in two more with a line-drive single to right. After Forgatch walked, Ian Gac posted an RBI single for a 7-1 cushion.
The Saltdogs did not let up and scored three more in the fifth. The inning was highlighted by a two-run scoring single to right by Tyler Smith. In the sixth, Ian Gac smoked his third home run of the doubleheader day for an 11-1 advantage. The Explorers scratched across three runs in the ninth for the game’s final margin.
Lincoln right-hander Marquis Fleming posted the win. Fleming (10-3) worked six innings and yielded just one earned run on four hits with three strikeouts and three walks. Jesse English suffered the loss for Sioux City. English (0-2) lasted three-and-a-third and allowed seven earned runs on eight hits with four strikeouts and three walks. Justin Kuks pitched the final three innings for the Saltdogs and picked up his first save of the season. Kuks gave up three runs (one earned) on four hits with two strikeouts and two walks.
Lincoln outhit Sioux City 15-8. Michael Lang (pictured) collected three hits for the Explorers. Peter Barrows went 2-for-3. Luis Nunez, Ian Gac, and Mike Gilmartin all posted three hit games for the Saltdogs. Nunez drove in two and scored a run. Gac homered and drove in two with a run. Gilmartin scored twice and had an RBI. Tyler Smith finished 1-for-2 with two runs and two RBIs.
Sioux City plays game three of the four-game series at Lincoln Sunday night at 7:05. The season concludes with game four of the series Monday afternoon at 2:05. For 2015 ticket information and promotion specials at Lewis & Clark Park, call 712-277-WINS or visit the Explorers website at www.xsbaseball.com.