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Sioux City, IA - Luis Mateo pitched seven shut out innings for the Sioux City Explorers and lead them to a 7-0 victory over the Gary SouthShore RailCats taking the first two games of the three game series. 


Mateo (5-2) followed up on the excellent start made by Justin Vernia last night with 7 shut out innings of his own. Allowing only 6 hits and striking out 5 and walking 1. He followed up on his complete game performance from the last time he faced the RailCats back on June 17th. Mateo now in two starts against Gary has thrown 16 innings, allowing just 1 run, striking out 10 and walking just a single batter. 


Sioux City got on the board in the third inning against RailCats starter Jeff McKenzie. Dylan Kelly and Luis Durango singled, Michael Lang came up with two outs in the inning and hit a 3-run homer over the left field fence to give Sioux City a 3-0 lead. The X’s weren't done in the inning as Jay Austin singled the following at bat and Nate Samson reached on an infield single with Austin advancing to third on the play on a throwing error by the third baseman. Jose Sermo then drove him home with a single to give the X’s the 4-0 lead. 


Sioux City struck again in the fifth when Luis Durango lead off the inning, reaching first on an error by the second baseman. Samson with two outs doubled into left field, the left fielder attempted to throw Samson out at second but the ball briefly got away from the second baseman. That was just enough time for Durango at third to race home and slide in ahead of the throw and tag for the fifth Sioux City run. Sermo then drove home Samson to make it 6-0 and pick up his second RBI of the night. 


Sioux City scored again in the eighth, with Jay Baum leading off the inning with a double and then being brought home by a 2-out single by David Kerian to give the X’s the final score of 7-0. 


Ryan Horstman and Geoff Broussard combined to pitch a scoreless eighth and ninth innings to complete the shut out. It was the first time that the X’s have gone two straight games of pitching a shut out since 2015 when they did it to again the Gary SouthShore RailCats beating them in Gary on July 8 & 9th by scores of 6-0 and 2-0. It was also just the ninth time in the 26 year franchise history that the Explorers had collected a shut out of their opponent in consecutive games. They have never done it for three straight games. 


The X’s with the win are now 26-9 on the season, the best record through 35 games in franchise history. The Explorers will go for the sweep on Sunday against the RailCats when they send right hander James Dykstra to the mound against righty Daniel Minor for the Cats with first pitch set for 6:05 pm.