Grizzlies seeking to snap skid

News-DemocratAugust 24, 2013 

— Looking to break a four-game losing streak, the Gateway Grizzlies were tied with Windy City after eight innings Saturday at GCS Ballpark.

Gateway third baseman Chris McClendon's seventh-inning run-scoring single --his third hit of the game -- scored Jose Flores as the Grizzlies forged a 3-3 tie after seven innings.

The game had not ended at press time.

A crowd of 4,938 braved the hot, humid conditions to see if they could help the Grizzlies (46-39) get back on track.

The Grizzlies started play Saturday just a game behind Southern Illinois in the battle for the second wild-card spot in the Frontier League playoffs.

In command of the West Division race on July 31, Gateway has endured a nightmarish August. Before Saturday's game, the Grizzlie\s were 6-14. The Grizzlies have lost nine of their last 10 games.

But getting a solid six-inning stint from All-Star pitcher Ja'Vaun West, Gateway seemed to have a chance to end their skid.

West (7-4), making his first start since August 1 because of shoulder stiffness, allowed solo home runs to Chad Cregar and Andrew Brauer, but little else and left with the score tied at 2 after six innings.

Gateway also used the home run to score its first two runs, Michael Wing and Jose Flores both going deep off Windy City starter Brian Oliver.

Windy City (42-43) took a 3-2 lead in the top of the seventh inning when Evan Button scored on a passed ball by Gateway catcher Landon Hernandez.

Wing gave the large turnout something to cheer about early, when he took an 0-1 pitch from Oliver well over the left-field wall for a 1-0 Gateway lead.

Brauer tied the game in the top of the second with a solo shot and thanks to the pitching of West, the game remained tied until the fifth

Red-hot in August with a mark of 14-7, the Thunderbolts loaded the bases with one out in the fourth on singles by Zach Aakhus ad Doug Joyce and a walk to Jayce Ray.

But West got out of the jam by striking out Chase Tucker and getting Evan Button to ground out to second baseman Jonathan Johnson.

Cregar put Windy City up 2-1 with his solo homer run in the top of the fifth, before Flores led off the bottom of the inning with a home run, tying the game at 2-2.

The Grizzlies also wasted several early scoring chances as it stranded six runners -- four in scoring position -- in the first five innings.

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