Normal, Ill. – The Gateway Grizzlies exploded for 14 runs on 17 hits as they won the rubber game of their three-game set against the Normal CornBelters, 14-6. The Grizzlies have scored 30 runs combined in the last two games.
Blake Brown started the scoring for Gateway (17-20) with a two-run homer in the second inning against RHP Chris Carmain (2-4). The blast was Brown’s seventh of the season.
After Cody Livesay drove home a run with sac fly in the third, the CornBelters (15-21) rallied for three runs to tie the game. Mitch Elliot popped a solo homer against Grizzlies starter Adam Eggnatz (2-0) in the third and RJ Perucki pulled Normal even at 3-3 with a two-run double in the fourth.
The tie was short-lived, as the Grizzlies hammered Carmain in the fifth. Seth Heck plated the frame’s first run with a sac fly, but that was just the beginning of Gateway’s eight-run outburst in the inning.
Tyler Tewell made it 6-3 with a two-run single, which was followed by Brown’s RBI single. With two outs and the bases loaded, RHP Horatio Acosta replaced Carmain. Logan Davis then lined a ball into right field which skipped under Nolan Meadows’ glove and rolled all the way to the fence. The bases clearing triple gave the Grizzlies a 10-3 edge while Livesay’s RBI single capped off the inning to make it 11–3.
Tewell continued his wonderful series by belting a solo shot to right field in the seventh. Gateway scored two more in the ninth, including a run on Brandon Thomas’ seventh homer of the season.
On the pitching side, Eggnatz picked up the victory while going six innings and allowing four runs. RHP Jordan Wellander and RHP Will LaMarche pitched a pair of scoreless frames out of the bullpen.
In total, the Grizzlies scored 30 runs on 32 hits in the last two games of the series. Tewell led the way on Thursday evening with three hits while Davis topped the team with four RBI.
Gateway plays a three-game series at River City beginning on Friday night. First pitch is at 6:35 p.m. The game can be heard on the Grizzlies Radio Network, which airs Friday on 1400 AM KJFF and www.GatewayGrizzlies.com/Radio
. Sam Levitt has the play-by-play call.