Sellout crowd sees RiverHawks split shutouts
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July 25, 2009 - LOVES PARK, Ill. – Power hitting backed up shutout pitching in each end of the Rockford RiverHawks’ doubleheader on Saturday. In the opener, Ryan Bird pitched his first career one-hitter and Joey Metropoulos and Brad Miller hit home runs as the Southern Illinois Miners won, 10-0. In the nightcap, Kyle Wright tossed a career-best two-hitter and shut out the Miners, 4-0, behind a home run from Ross McCoy.

The teams split the rain-shortened two-game series, in front of a sellout crowd of 3,598 at Road Ranger Stadium. The RiverHawks, 29-27, and the Miners each lost a half-game in the standings to Windy City, which holds the final Frontier League playoff spot, but picked up a half-game on West Division-leading River City. The ThunderBolts beat the Rascals, 6-2.

In the opener, Tony Roth broke a scoreless tie with a third-inning single. Metropoulos hit a two-run homer, his 18th of the year, in the fourth and added a RBI double in the Miners’ six-run fifth inning. The RiverHawks committed three errors in the fifth and Miller hit a three-run homer to knock out Rockford starter Tanner Watson. Watson (3-2) gave up nine runs, six of them unearned, in 4 1/3 innings.

Bird (7-3) surrendered only a third-inning single to Jono Brooks. Bird struck out six and walked two.

In the nightcap, Wright (8-1) held the Miners to two Metropoulos singles and won his eighth consecutive decision. Wright struck out nine and walked two.

The RiverHawks broke a scoreless tie on Matt Mazurek’s RBI single in the third inning. In the fourth, Brandon Cohen extended his career-best hitting streak to 11 games with a RBI double and scored on McCoy’s fourth home run of the season.

The RiverHawks hit the road for the next six games. They’re in River City for a 6:01 p.m. game on Sunday. They’ll be back at Road Ranger Stadium at 6:05 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 1 to play the Rascals on American/Rock Valley College/Rockford Health Systems Blue Out Night. Every fan will receive a blue RiverHawks T-shirt, courtesy of American, RVC, Rockford Health Systems, Honeybaked Ham, Q98.5 and WTVO.

The RiverHawks are members of the Frontier League, a 12-team independent professional baseball league in its 17th season. Advertising and ticket information is available by calling (815) 885-2255. Fans can also visit the RiverHawks online at www.rockfordriverhawks.com. Most games are broadcast live on ESPN 1380, and on the team website.


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