05/25/2023 9:32 PM
CRESTWOOD, IL – After defeating the Tri-City ValleyCats in game one of a split doubleheader on Thursday afternoon, the ThunderBolts dropped the nightcap to the Gateway Grizzlies 14-3 at Ozinga Field.
Justin Miller made his first start in almost six years for the ThunderBolts (5-7) and looked good out of the gate with a scoreless first inning, but Gateway (8-4) took a lead that they wouldn’t give up with a run in the top of the second.
The game was broken open early as Josh Smith came out of the Windy City bullpen and struggled to throw strikes. In less than an inning of work, he walked six batters and hit another as the Grizzlies put a six-spot on the scoreboard to build a 7-0 lead.
Gateway poured it on, scoring in the fourth and fifth innings as well before making it a 14-0 lead with a four-run ninth inning.
The ThunderBolts didn’t get their offense in gear until it was too late. Peyton Isaacson hit an RBI double with two outs in the bottom of the ninth. Two more runs scored on an error but that was all the Bolts could muster.
Collin Sullivan (2-0) was excellent in the win for Gateway. He allowed only three hits and no runs in seven innings. Miller (0-2) took the loss, allowing one run in his two innings of work.
The ThunderBolts continue their seven-game home stand on Friday as they enter a three-game series with the Florence Y’alls. Taylor Sugg (0-0, 4.50) will make his second start of the year for the Bolts. It is Crestwood Community Night at Ozinga Field and the game will be followed by a fireworks show. First pitch is slated for 6:35 and the broadcast can be found through wcthunderbolts.com.
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