The ThunderBolts went ahead early and held on 5-4 Wednesday night in their second straight victory over the Normal CornBelters at the Corn Crib.
The game got off to a great start with four of the ThunderBolts’ first five hitters reaching including J.T. Restko, whose double knocked in Kent Gerst. Tim Alberts followed him up with a three-run homer, his first of the season, to make it 4-0 in the first.
Normal chipped away at the lead with single runs in the first, fourth and fifth innings off of Bolts starter Ryan Quigley. Quigley went five innings, allowing three runs on eight hits while striking out seven.
After the rocky first inning, Normal starter Dan Blewett was exceptional. Following a Dan Jordan single to lead off the second, Blewett did not allow another hit until the top of the sixth when Restko took a three-one pitch over the left field wall for his second homer in as many nights. That made the score 5-3.
Things got a little scary for Windy City in the seventh when the CornBelters crept to within one on a Garret Bass double and subsequent Daniel Cox RBI triple with one out. But Bradley Blanks got Mike Garcia and Andrew Barbaro to groundout without allowing the tying run to come in from third. Brandon Garner and Nick Hall each allowed a runner to reach second base in the eighth and ninth innings respectively, but Normal would fall short in both innings. Quigley improved to 2-0 with the win and Blewett fell to 0-2. Nick Hall picked up his second save.
Windy City and Normal complete their three game series on Thursday evening with Rob Roth (0-1) on the mound for the ThunderBolts. Game time is 7:00 with a pregame broadcast at 6:45 on WXAV 88.3 fm.