Five runs allowed in the top of the fifth inning took the game out of reach for the RedHawks, when 3,329 fans in attendance saw two players and two coaches get ejected on Sunday afternoon at Newman Outdoor Field.
In this afternoon’s matchup, the visiting Sioux City Explorers were first to get a run up on the board. Oscar Mesa scored in the top of the first after reaching on an error by C.J. Retherford. Rene Tosoni collected the RBI on a fielder’s choice. Tosoni later became the next man to cross home plate in the inning, following Tommy Mendonca taking a pitch to the chest for a bases loaded, hit-by pitch increasing the score to 2-0.
The very next inning, the RedHawks’ struggle continued as they let Sioux City score two more. Michael Lang reached on a base hit to right field and Mesa drew a walk. With runners on first and second, two RBIs came off the bat of Tosoni on a line-drive up the middle that almost struck Stanton. At that point, the Explorers were up 4-0 after less than two innings of play.
The RedHawks did, however, find a loud answer for those runs as they were able to lower Sioux City’s lead to 4-3 in the bottom of the third. With one man out, Nic Jackson drew a walk and was followed by three straight doubles by Retherford (RBI, scoring Jackson), Sawyer Carroll (RBI, scoring Retherford), and Michael Thompson (RBI, scoring Carroll).
The game remained close until the fifth inning, when the 3,329 fans witnessed the visitors put up five runs in the top of the inning. Tosoni singled, Brock Kjeldgaard followed suit, and with one man out, Mendonca roped an RBI single to right field to plate Tosoni. Kjeldgaard scored on Dillon Usiak’s groundball that resulted in a second error by Retherford. Mendonca then scored the third run on a passed ball by Higgs, and Ramon with Usiak crossed home for two more runs on Oscar Mesa’s two RBI single.
An answer from the home team came in the form of one run in the bottom of the fifth. Crossing home for the RedHawks’ fourth run was Michael Thompson. After he reached safely on a single, Brandon Tripp’s double sent him home.
In the very next inning (top seventh) both Freddy Flores and Doug Simunic got ejected for arguing with the home plate umpire Nick Gonzalez. Subsequently, the Explorers quickly returned their lead back to six runs, when Usiak got home safely after Mesa sent him home with an off-the-wall double, 10-4 Explorers.
Making it 10-5 in the bottom of the seventh was Frank Salerno on an RBI courtesy of Nic Jackson, yet it would prove to not quite be enough in Sunday’s matchup.
In the game, Taylor Stanton suffered the loss and is now 5-11 on the year. With Sioux City’s starter Alex Caldera not throwing enough innings to qualify for the win, reliever Geoff Broussard got the win on the day. He is now 8-1 on the year.
Don’t forget to get your tickets [(701)235-6161 or www.fmredhawks.com] for the next home series, against the Kansas City T-Bones starting Tuesday night at 7:02pm.