RiverHawks outslug Rascals 15-10
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May 29, 2006 - O’FALLON, Mo. – A day after scoring two runs on just five hits, the Rockford RiverHawks pounded out 15 runs on 40 hits to get past River City in game two of a three-game series. Every RiverHawk in the starting lineup gathered at least one hit, led by catcher Gooby Gerlits who tied a team record with a five-hit performance.

But it was not an easy path to victory. Rockford had to overcome three separate River City leads. Starting pitcher Auggie Rodriguez was pulled in the second inning after getting just four outs, and at the end of two innings the Rascals led 5-0. But the RiverHawks came to life in the third inning against River City starter Chris Webb. The first three batters all singled to load the bases. After a sacrifice fly by designated hitter Bart Hunton put the RiverHawks on the board, right fielder Nick Johnson delivered a run-scoring double, followed by Gerlits with a two-run single. Rockford tied it in the fourth on back-to-back doubles by second baseman Joe Anthonsen and center fielder Cody Brooks that finally chased Webb from the game.

River City bounced back with two runs in their half of the fourth inning to regain the lead, 7-5. But Rockford again responded, this time on a double by first baseman Mayke Cabrera that scored Gerlits and an RBI single by Anthonsen.

The Rascals took the lead one more time with a run in the bottom of the fifth that scored in large part because of a wild pitch and an error by Gerlits, one of four errors on the day for the RiverHawks. Rockford again tied it up in their next at bat on a groundout that plated a run by Johnson.

Things got dicey in the bottom of the sixth for the RiverHawks. Reliever Grant Payton, who had been trying to stem the tide since entering in the second inning, gave up two singles and a walk to the first three batters of the inning. He was relieved by Adam Kroft, who faced a bases-load, no-out situation. Kroft retired the next three batters without allowing a run. Rockford took control from there. They scored on an RBI groundout by third baseman Mike Bidwell in the seventh to gain a lead they would not relinquish. They blew the game open in the eighth inning, sending 12 men to the plate and scoring six runs. The first eight batters all reached base in that inning.

Kroft wound up working three innings of relief to earn the win. He gave up one run on three hits, striking out one, walking none, and hitting a batter. In addition to Gerlits’ five hits, Anthonsen and Brooks each contributed four.

The win put Rockford all alone in first place in the West Division. They now have a 4-1 record, while River City is in second place at 3-2.

The RiverHawks will go for the sweep in a day game on Memorial Day. First pitch is scheduled for 2:05. After an off day on Tuesday, the team will return to Rockford to open RiverHawks Stadium on Wednesday, May 31 at 7:05 p.m.

The RiverHawks are members of the Frontier League, a 10-team independent professional baseball league that will play its 14th season in 2006. Advertising, ticket and suite information is available by calling the box office at (815) 885-2255. All games are broadcast live on WRHL-FM, 102.3 – the Hub and online at www.rockfordriverhawks.com.


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