Grizzlies can't fight off CornBelters

Special to the News-DemocratJuly 6, 2013 

The Normal Cornbelters scored six unanswered runs to erase a three-run Gateway Grizzlies' lead en route to a 6-3 victory Friday night in the opening game of a three-game series in Normal..

Gateway (28-14) scored the first three runs of the game in the fourth inning on four hits.

Jon Myers, Vladimir Frias, Jonathan Johnson and Jose Flores all recorded singles, with Johnson driving in two runs and Flores plating one.

Normal followed that up with its six unanswered runs.

Keoni Manago drove in a run on a single in the fifth, putting the CornBelters on the scoreboard.

Normal busted the game open with a four-run sixth inning against Grizzlies starting pitcher Tucker Jensen (4-3).

Mike Mobbs brought in a run on a fielder's choice and Mike Schwartz hit a three-run home run with two outs, putting the CornBelters in front 5-3.

Manago collected another RBI single in the eighth, adding some insurance for Normal.

Jensen suffered the loss for the Grizzlies, allowing five runs (four earned) on 10 hits in 5 2/3 innings. The right-hander struck out five and walked two. Jensen is now 0-2 in two road starts.

Johnson paced the Grizzlies attack with a 3-for-4 night.

The loss snapped a three-game winning streak for Gateway.

The Grizzlies and Cornbelters meet again Saturday in Normal with right-hander Jake Stephens making his professional debut for Gateway. Game time is 7 p.m.

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