Justice Justice homered twice and helped power the Winnipeg Goldeyes over the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks 12-7 on Thursday night at a sold-out Newman Outdoor Field.
Winnipeg was able to push across six runs in the first inning off RedHawks starter Billy Weitzman, who was signed earlier in the day and was making his season debut for Fargo-Moorhead. Justice struck the big blow with a three-run home run while Brett Dowdy and Juan Diaz added RBI-singles. Left fielder Dee Brown also hit a solo homer in the first for the Goldeyes to make the score 6-0. Weitzman was sent to the showers after just 2/3 of an inning.
The RedHawks would rally, scoring twice in the bottom of the first and three more times in the second. Third baseman Eric Campbell hit a two-run home run in the first inning and also drew a bases loaded walk in the second frame. Jeese Hoorelbeke followed with a single that scored two and cut the Goldeye lead to 6-5.
Winnipeg added to their lead in the top of the fourth. Center fielder Aharon Eggelston led off the inning with a single up the middle and moved to second base on a passed ball. Another single up the box by West scored Eggelston and made the score 7-5.
The Goldeyes put two more runs on the board in the sixth inning. Brown led off with a single, stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error by Fargo-Moorhead catcher Alan Rick. Brown then scored on an RBI single by Dowdy, who took second base after RedHawks left fielder Jeremiah Piepkorn juggled the ball. Dowdy scored on West’s third RBI single of the game, making the score 9-5.
Justin Justice’s second home run of the night in the seventh extended the Winnipeg lead to 10-5.
Fargo-Moorhead loaded the bases in the bottom of the eighth on three straight walks by Winnipeg pitching, bringing up center fielder Nic Jackson. Jackson hit a sacrifice fly to right field, scoring Rick. Winnipeg shortstop Zach Williams then committed two errors on a ground ball by Eric Campbell, allowing Zach Penprase to score and making the score 10-7.
The Goldeyes tacked on two final insurance runs in the ninth inning off Piepkorn, who came in from left field to pitch the final frame. Third baseman Vince Harrison blasted a double into the left-center field gap, scoring Juan Diaz and Luis Alen.
Winnipeg’s Zach Baldwin (4-2) picked up the win in relief of starter Stephen Flake. Baldwin pitched four scoreless innings, striking out four and issuing only one free pass. Bobby Korecky tossed 1.2 perfect innings to collect his tenth save of the season.
Weitzman (0-1) took the loss for Fargo-Moorhead. The righty went 2/3 of an inning, allowing six runs on four hits. Weizman also walked three.
West, Diaz and Brown all went 3-for-5 in the game for the Goldeyes with West driving in three. Justice had four RBI to go along with his two home runs.
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