James breaks record as RiverHawks roll Paints
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August 24, 2008 - LOVES PARK, Ill. – Jason James emphatically put his stamp on a historic night for the Rockford RiverHawks.

James hit a two-run homer in the first inning on Sunday to break the team’s single-season hits record. He drove in five runs and finished a triple short of the cycle as the RiverHawks beat Chillicothe, 11-2. The RiverHawks won their fifth in a row and pulled into a tie for the final Frontier League playoff spot, in front of a near-sellout crowd of 2,920 at Road Ranger Stadium.

The RiverHawks outscored the Paints, 33-8, in a three-game series sweep, the first time Rockford has ever swept Chillicothe. Rockford beat Chillicothe in four of six meetings this year, the first time the RiverHawks have ever won the season series. Starter Garrett Bauer went seven innings for his 23rd win in three years with the RiverHawks and tied Tanner Watson for the all-time team record.

Traverse City lost, 8-5, to Southern Illinois. Gateway beat Midwest, 11-6. Rockford, Traverse City and Gateway are in a three-way tie for the final wild-card spot with nine games left to play.

In the first inning, James broke a scoreless tie with a one-out fly over the wall in right field. James was 3-for-5 and broke the single-season hits record of 123 set by Olmo Rosario in 2005. Rosario is now with San Francisco’s Class AA affiliate at Connecticut. James, with 126 hits, is 18 short of the league record set by Chillicothe’s Jose Rodriguez three years ago.

Chillicothe starter Mike Rocco (1-8) gave up unearned runs in the second and third innings. He retired the first two batters of the sixth, but the following 10 batters reached base safely. The first seven scored. Matt Mazurek singled home a run and three batters and a pitching change later, James tripled with the bases loaded.

Bauer (10-4) became just the third RiverHawk to win 10 times in a single season. He scattered two runs on five hits, including a leadoff home run by Travis Garcia in the sixth inning. With two outs in the sixth and the bases loaded, he struck out Bubba Garcia to preserve a 4-2 lead.

The RiverHawks are off Monday. On Tuesday, they start their final home series of the season. Evansville is in for a 7:05 p.m. game. WREX – Channel 13 has purchased all available seats at the stadium and is offering them to the Stateline community. Tickets may be picked up at all Stateline Road Ranger gas stations. The Saturn of Rockford Youth Clinic takes place on the field at 5 p.m.

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.


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