Florence pulls away from ThunderBolts in rubber match


CRESTWOOD, IL – The Florence Y’alls broke open a tight game with three runs in the fourth inning and three in the fifth, eventually beating the ThunderBolts 8-1 at Ozinga Field Thursday afternoon.

Michael Barker got off to a great start on the mound for the Bolts (3-4). He struck out the side in the first inning. Through the first three, he had six strikeouts and allowed just one run on a solo homer from TJ Reeves.

The Y’alls built their lead up with two outs in the fourth. With two on and two out, Ashton Creal hit a shallow popup to right field that the ThunderBolts couldn’t handle. It dropped for a single that scored a run. The next batter, Tim Borden, doubled in two more.

The ThunderBolts loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the inning but didn’t score. In the game, they went 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position and left 12 men on base.

Florence added another three-spot in the fifth as Hank Zeisler hit an RBI double and Zade Richardson followed with a two-run homer.

The only run for Windy City came in the bottom of the seventh. Joe Johnson walked and scored on a Cam Phelts double to make the score 7-1. The Y’alls tacked on their final run in the top of the ninth.

Jonaiker Villalobos (1-0) allowed eight base runners but no runs over six innings, earning the win. Barker (0-2) lasted 4.2 innings and took the loss.

The ThunderBolts begin their first road trip of the season on Friday as they head to Gateway for a three-game weekend series with the Grizzlies. Buddie Pindel (1-0, 4.50) makes his second start of the year in the Grizzlies’ home opener. He’ll be opposed by Ryne Moore (0-0, 12.00). First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 and the broadcast can be found through wcthunderbolts.com.

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