CRESTWOOD, IL – The Rockford RiverHawks jumped out to a 4-0 lead Monday morning and the ThunderBolt comeback fell just short in a 6-5 loss at Standard Bank Stadium. The loss was the team’s fourth in a row.
The RiverHawks jumped ahead 1-0 in the top of the third inning on a Luis Parache solo home run. It was the only hit that ThunderBolts starter Guido Fonseca allowed in 5.2 innings.
The Bolts, though, stranded six runners over the first four innings and Rockford took advantage of some Windy City miscues in scoring three runs in the sixth. After Reno Malay walked to lead off the inning, Greg Van Horn reached on an error. With the runners at second and third and one out, another ThunderBolt error let in Malay. Jake Eigsti knocked in Van Horn on a sacrifice fly and Jason James’ bloop single scored David Cooper to finish the scoring for the inning.
Windy City got their first run in the bottom of the sixth when they loaded the bases with one out and Lee Rubin grounded into a fielder’s choice to score Devin Shepherd.
Rockford quickly answered with a seventh inning run coming on a Malay RBI single. But the ThunderBolts would not go away, posting two in the seventh when Nick Mahin was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and Chase Porch came up with a two-out infield single.
Again the RiverHawks responded getting a run on a Kevin Smith groundout that scored James as they went up 6-3.
The Thunderbolts’ last big chance came in the eighth. Zach Aakhus’ sacrifice fly made it 6-4 and Shepherd came up with a two-out infield single that scored Brandon Anderson to cut the Rockford lead to 6-5, but that was all the Bolts would get in the loss.
Joe Scumaci (4-2) was the winning pitcher and Fonseca took the loss despite a strong ThunderBolts debut. It was the first time the ThunderBolts have been swept in a three-game series at home since July of 2008.
The ThunderBolts travel to River City on Tuesday for a three-game series with the Rascals. Game one features Matt Jernstad (5-6) against Zack Sterner (8-1). The game at T.R. Hughes Ballpark begins at 7:05 and can be heard on Sportsjuice.com.