Grizzlies rout Freedom, extend win streak to nine games

Special to the News-DemocratJuly 2, 2014 

The Gateway Grizzlies moved their winning streak to nine games with a 9-2 win Wednesday night against the Florence Freedom at GCS Ballpark in Sauget in front of 3,285 fans.

The win gave the Grizzlies (30-13) their 12th win in their last 13 home games. Gateway improved to a league-best 21-4 at home and maintained their four-game lead in the West Division over River City. They also won their 10th series of the year and their eighth in eight home series.

After falling behind 1-0 on a Rob Kelly solo home run in the second, Gateway jumped on Florence (17-22) starting pitcher Dave Middendorf (2-4) for three runs in the bottom of the second to take a 3-1 lead.

Xavier Macklin brought in a run on an infield single, Michael Johnson collected an RBI double and Kale Kiser picked up a sacrifice fly.

Gateway extended its lead to 6-1 with three runs in the fifth inning. Richard Seigel drove in Michael Wing on a double and Ben Waldrip smacked a two-run home run.

Landon Hernandez picked up a two-run home run of his own in the sixth inning and Macklin brought in a run on a groundout in the bottom of the seventh after Florence scored their final run of the game in the top of the seventh.

Waldrip finished 4-for-4 with a triple and a home run. Seigel and Johnson both collected three hits while Gateway picked up 15 as a team.

Ja'Vaun West (6-1) got the start for Gateway and picked up the win, allowing two runs on seven hits in seven innings while striking out a career-high 11 batters.

The Grizzlies look for their third straight sweep on Thursday night at GCS Ballpark. Right-hander Aaron Newcomb (7-1) will make the start for the Grizzlies against the Freedom. First pitch is set for 6:05 with postgame fireworks.

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