|July 31, 2007 - Washington, Pa. - After the first four contests between the two teams were blowouts, it almost seemed inevitable that Washington and Rockford would play a close game this season.
That close game came on Tuesday night at Consol Energy Park, as the Rockford RiverHawks emerged victorious with an 8-5 victory over Washington.
The WildThings scored early, as catcher Mario Garza hit a two-run, two-out double in the bottom half of the first inning, scoring Nate Messner and Robbie Knapp. Rockford got one of those runs back in the top of the second, when Justus Kimbrough hit a sacrifice fly that brought Brad Dutton home from third base. In their half of the third, the RiverHawks tied the score when Jason James hit a double that brought Matt Sauls home. The next at bat, Matt Hagen hit a fielder's choice, and that brought Roberto Valiente into score. Alhaji Turay capped off the five-run third inning for Rockford, as he hit a three-run home run that cleared both outfield walls and landed in the parking lot at Consol Energy Park. The 'Hawks got insurance runs in the eighth as Jono Brooks singled home Dutton, as well as the ninth, when Matt Hagen's sacrifice fly sent Valiente across home plate.
James Cramphin (3-2) picked up the win for Rockford, as he pitched five innings, striking out seven batters, his highest strike out total of the season. Dave Dowling pitched two innings for the 'Hawks, breaking Josh Latimer's team record with his 83rd appearance in a Rockford uniform. RiverHawks relievers Dowling, Roy Bringleson and Jason Baca pitched four scoreless innings combined, only allowing two hits. J.J. Hollenbeck (4-3) picked up the loss in the rematch of the July 26th game at Road Ranger Stadium.
Jason James had three hits in the ballgame, extending his current hitting streak to five games.
The RiverHawks look to sweep the series against Washington tomorrow night, with a 6:05 p.m. first pitch at Consol Energy Park. You can hear all of the action with Bill Czaja starting with the Miller Lite pre-game show, at 5:50 on 1330 AM WNTA.