Frontier League


ThunderBolts outdueled by Empire State



CRESTWOOD, IL – Despite home runs from Troy Viola and Bren Spillane, the ThunderBolts dropped the middle match of a three-game series to the Empire State Greys, 5-2 at Ozinga Field Wednesday afternoon.

The scoring started in the third inning, when the Greys (11-44) took advantage of a pair of Windy City errors to take a 3-0 lead. Quentin Holmes started the rally with two outs, reaching on the first defensive lapse. Two batters later, with two on base, former ThunderBolts Manny Garcia hit an RBI single. When the ball was misplayed in left field, Garcia motored all the way around to make it a three-run play.

The Greys added to their lead with an RBI double from Luis Atiles in the fourth and they made it 5-0 on Josh Sears’s double in the fifth.

The ThunderBolts (24-31) finally broke through in the bottom of the fifth as Viola hammered his fourth homer of the season to make it 5-1. Spillane doubled the team’s run total in the sixth with a solo shot.

That was all the offense the ThunderBolts could muster as Garrett Sutton and a trio of relievers combined to hold the Empire State lead, evening the series at one win each.

Sutton (1-2) picked up his first professional win, allowing two runs on seven hits over 5.1 innings. Nick Trabacchi earned his first save with a scoreless ninth inning.

Kenny Mathews (1-6) took the loss. He allowed five runs (two earned) with six strikeouts and no walks over five innings.

The rubber match of the three-game set is slated for Thursday morning. Logan Schmitt (2-2, 4.61) starts for the Bolts against Empire State’s Michael Barker (3-6, 7.21). First pitch is scheduled for 10:35 as Ozinga Field hosts the first of two straight Big Splash Days. The broadcast can be found through

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