JOLIET, IL – Chad Cregar hit two bases loaded doubles including the game-winner in the eighth inning as the ThunderBolts defeated the Joliet Slammers 7-5 at Silver Cross Field Tuesday night.
After both pitchers started strong, Joliet began the scoring in the bottom of the third, collecting three consecutive one-out singles. Both Trey Manz and Josh Flores scored on Brad Netzel’s hit to put the Slammers on top 2-0.
It didn’t take long for the Bolts to answer. In the top of the fourth, they loaded the bases on a Zach Aakhus single and two walks. Chad Cregar came up with two outs and doubled to right field, scoring three runs. Two more Andrew Moss walks loaded the bases again, but Windy City would not score any more in the fourth.
Joliet reclaimed the lead in the bottom of the sixth. Hector Pellot singled and Brandon Peters walked and stolen bases put the runners at second and third with only one out. Guido Fonseca came up with a big strikeout of Sean Estand, but Kris Kasarjian singled off of reliever Matt Costello to drive in two runs with two outs and give the Slammers a 4-3 lead.
The Bolts responded in the eighth. Mike Torres led off with a bunt single and made it to second on an error. After Quentin Luquette bunted him to third, Jason James singled him home to tie the score. Devin Shepherd then hit a groundball to short that should have ended the inning, but Brad Netzel booted the ball to keep the Bolts alive. Nick Kuroczko walked and Chad Cregar came up with his second three-run double of the night, giving Windy City the 7-4 lead.
The Slammers had one more chance when, in the eighth, they loaded the bases with no outs, but Brett Durand came out of the bullpen and allowed only a sacrifice fly to make the score 7-5, where it would finish.
Greg Johnson pitched a scoreless seventh for the win (6-1) while Chuck Lukanen took the loss (4-1).
The Bolts and Slammers continue their series Wednesday night at Silver Cross Field. Joliet will send Tommy Mendoza (6-1) to the mound. The Thunderbolts will counter with Dustin Williams (11-6). Wednesday’s game begins at 7:05 and can be heard on WXAV, 88.3 fm and wxav.com.