Lake Erie defeats Gateway, 5-4
Sauget, Ill. – Lake Erie with little room for error trying to get back in the playoff picture needed a series win against one of the teams ahead of them. For the Gateway Grizzlies, they’re in a similar boat as Lake Erie. The Grizzlies clawing their way to the wild card spot, not being able to afford a series loss.
The Crushes used big hits once more in the rubber match. The team led throughout the game but the Gateway Grizzlies made things interesting in the late innings with a comeback too short as Lake Erie went on to win 5-4.
Lake Erie started the first four innings strong. The Crushers scored three runs and kept the Grizzlies quiet at the plate. In the first inning, Connor Owings started the inning with a leadoff triple, a batter later, he scored on a passed ball. In the second, Bryan De La Rosa continued his hot series with an RBI double to left field. In the fourth, Owings provided power with a solo home run to left center.
On the pitching side of things, it was a strong outing for Crusher newcomer, Kevin Holcomb. In his first start with the team he lasted five innings, the only run he gave up was in the fifth inning when Jay Prather hit a solo home run to right field and cut the deficit to two. Holcomb allowed three hits, one walk, and struck out six.
The Crushers added insurance runs in the seventh inning. Another Lake Erie newcomer helped the Crushers in a big way. London Green, who’s first professional hit was a home run in Wednesday’s win. Green poked an RBI single to right field, raising the lead to three. Austin White followed with an RBI single to center field.
Gateway didn’t go down quietly after failing to gain momentum throughout the game. Andrew Penner, for his second home run of the series, hit a three run home run over the left field wall to cut the deficit to one.
Up by one going into the final two innings, the Crushers called to their workhorses out of the bullpen. The dangerous set-up man Sam Curtis appeared in the eighth inning and did what he does best. Curtis threw a scoreless 1-2-3 eighth inning. Rivero appeared in the ninth inning and continued his impressive season as well. The closer threw a 1-2-3 ninth inning, closing the door on the Grizzlies for a series win for the Crushers.
Lake Erie returns to action on Friday, August 12th in Avon, OH. They’ll face off against the Florence Y’alls for a three game series. Friday’s first pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM ET.