Grizzlies drop third straight in Normal

The Gateway Grizzlies allowed four runs in the first inning Thursday night and never led in an 8-4 loss to the Normal CornBelters at The Corn Crib.

Gateway (33-44) finished the season series 3-9 against the CornBelters (40-32), including an 0-6 mark in Normal. Across the 12 meetings, the Grizzlies allowed 26 first-inning runs.

Over the first four games between the two teams in 2018, Gateway did not concede a first-inning run and won three of the four games. All 26 first-inning runs scored in the remaining eight games (3.25 per game), and the Grizzlies lost all eight.

Max MacNabb (8-7) allowed seven runs (six earned) over 6 1/3 innings for the loss.

Jeff Cardenas was 3 for 4 with a double and a walk. Justin Ellison had a double and two walks. Blake Brown and Shane Mardirosian both tripled.

Gateway will return home to open a three-game series Friday night against the Southern Illinois Miners.