|July 29, 2008 - Marion, IL - Rockford scored twice early but dropped the finale 3-2. The Miners were helped by the long ball all night, tying the game on a Brandon Jones homer and winning it with a Joey Metropolous walk-off blast in the ninth.
With the loss, the 'Hawks fall to six back of the first-place Miners and also drop the series. Rockford led in each game of the series, but was unable to hold on in the last two. In addition, the RiverHawks didn't score a run past the sixth inning in each of the two losses.
The RiverHawks got on the board early after Joe Anthonsen extended his 10-game hitting streak in the first. He scored on a Jason James single later in the inning. With the RBI, James has six in this series alone. Rockford scored one more in the sixth after Robbie Knapp reached base on an error and later scored on a Mike Scripture sac fly.
Southern Illinois responded right away in the bottom of the sixth. Tim Dorn walked with one out, then Jones hit a homerun to tie the game. It took only two batters into the bottom of the ninth to end the ballgame.
Both starting pitchers had good starts and both received no decisions. Garrett Bauer, the Riverhawks ace, thre 6.1 innings, giving up 2 earned runs and striking out 3. For the Miners, Ryan Bird struck out five in six innings. Only one of his runs was earned. Jake McMurran picked up the win for the Miners, while Roy Bringelson got saddled with the loss.
Also notable in this game, Brad Dutton connected with a career best 4-4 game. All four of his hits were singles. And Knapp was unable to extend his 11-game hitting streak. That means Anthonsen's is the new team-best.
The RiverHawks come home tomorrow for the opener of a six-game homestand against Washington. First pitch is slated for 7:05. Peden Rucker (2-1, 3.72) throws for the 'Hawks and the Wild Things send Michael Schellinger (7-3, 3.06) to the rubber. The game will be broadcast live on WNTA (1330 AM) and at the team website.
Forest City Dog Training and Petco sponsor the annual Bark in the Park as well. Fans are invited to bring their dog to the park. Water bowls, treats, dog toys and other canine necessities will make Road Ranger Stadium a Fido-friendly environment.
The RiverHawks are members of the Frontier League, a 12-team independent professional baseball league in its 16th season. Advertising and ticket information is available by calling the box office at (815) 885-2255. Most games are broadcast live on WNTA (1330 AM) and the internet. Fans can also visit the RiverHawks online at www.rockfordriverhawks.com.