The Normal CornBelters, presented by Illinois Corn Farmers, fell short in a pitching duel on Thursday night at Rent One Park in Marion, Illinois, as the Southern Illinois Miners broke a tie with a game-ending sacrifice fly to take a 2-1 win.
A longball started the scoring for the CornBelters when Asif Shah hit his eighth home run, a solo shot just over the right field wall into the Miners bullpen with one out in the fourth.
The Miners answered in the fifth when they reached Belters starter Tyler Lavigne for three straight hits to lead off the inning, including a double by Kenji Sakaguchi, a single by Eric Suttle and an RBI base hit by Jereme Milons. A double play started by a nice grab by Daniel Cox behind third base and a strikeout ended the threat and kept the game tied 1-1 going into the sixth inning.
Southern Illinois broke through in the ninth when Josh Womack led off with a triple to the right field corner, and scored the winning run one batter later on Kenji Sakaguchi's sacrifice fly to right field.
Ben Shivers (2-1) captured the win as Jeremy Brewer (0-3) suffered the loss. The series concludes at Rent One Park on Friday at 7:05 p.m. with right-handers starting for both teams, Bobby Pritchett (3-1, 4.85) for the CornBelters and Brendon Malkowski (4-1, 2.02) for the Miners. Pre-game on WEZC-FM 95.9 and WJBC.com is at 6:50. The CornBelters then return home for a three-game series against the Florence Freedom, beginning with a State Farm Starstruck Saturday featuring the Jesse White Tumblers at 7 p.m. at the Corn Crib.
article courtesy Normal Cornbelters