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Bolts triumph in wild back-and-forth at Gateway

Bolts 10 Grizzlies 8

SAUGET, IL – The ThunderBolts erased an early four-run deficit and came from behind twice overall to defeat the Gateway Grizzlies 10-8 at GCS Credit Union Ballpark Saturday night.

Gateway (32-44) jumped out to an immediate four-run lead as they collected five hits in the first inning. Luke Lowery drove in two runs on a double and Zak Taylor and Luis Roman picked up RBI singles.

The ThunderBolts (32-45) responded quickly when Tyler Straub singled, Christian Funk walked and Michael Mateja hit a three-run homer. The Bolts took the lead the following inning when Chase Cockrell walked and Tyler Alamo hit a two-run shot to make the score 5-4.

Gateway bounced back, tying the score on a run-scoring groundout in the third inning before a Lowery solo home run gave them the lead back in the fourth.

Again, the ThunderBolts were up to the task. They loaded the bases in the fifth and Mateja walked to score the tying run. Brynn Martinez brought home the leading run on a single and an error brought home another, making it 8-6.

Lowery and Dustin Woodcock hit back-to-back home runs in the sixth inning for Gateway, knotting the score at eight. After the homers, both benches cleared and players were ejected on both sides before the game continued. Order was restored, though, and the ThunderBolts bullpen controlled the rest of the game, not letting the Grizzlies threaten again.

The decisive runs were scored in the eighth inning, when Tyler Alamo singled and Taisei Fukuhara walked before Micah Coffey picked up the go-ahead single. Jordan Swiss’s sacrifice fly scored Fukuhara to make it 10-8.

Blake Hickman (4-3) retired all four batters he faced for the win and Grant Black (1-5) gave up two runs in the eighth for the loss.

Game three of the series will feature Hayden Shenefield (1-0, 5.68) on the mound for the Bolts against Gateway’s Ian Kahaloa (1-5, 3.45). First pitch from GCS Credit Union Ballpark is scheduled for 6:05 on Sunday night and the broadcast can be heard on WXAV, 88.3 FM and wxav.com.

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