(Photo Credit: Mick Lite)
The Gateway Grizzlies split a doubleheader with the River City Rascals on Wednesday afternoon, winning the first game 5-3 before falling in the second game 4-2 at GCS Ballpark.
The Grizzlies (8-21) used a fantastic outing from RHP Vincent Molesky (3-2) to earn the victory in game one. Molesky pitched 6.1 innings of three-hit ball and retired 17 straight River City batters at one point.
However, the Rascals (17-11) didn’t go away quietly. Josh Ludy homered off Molesky to lead off the seventh inning of the seven-inning contest. With the score 5-2, Danny Canela walked to knock the Grizzlies’ starter out of the game.
Gateway closer Brett Zawacki then came on for the save opportunity and made things interesting before he finally shut the door. Hector Crespo doubled with one out to put runners at second and third while bringing the tying run to the plate. A sacrifice fly made it 5-3 Gateway, before back-to-back walks loaded the bases. However, Zawacki ended the threat by getting Curran Redal to strikeout.
The Rascals struck first on an RBI single by Ludy in the first inning. Molesky settled into a groove after the single, retiring 17 straight River City batters. His offense also helped out by rattling off five unanswered runs.
Blake Brown plated Ben Waldrip with an RBI double in the first inning and Richard Seigel added a pair of RBI singles, one in the second inning and another in the fourth inning. Rolando Gomez also had an run-scoring sacrifice fly in the second inning.
Game two featured a strong pitching performance from River City RHP Dane Stone (2-1). Stone limited the Gateway offense to three hits and two runs in 5.1 innings of work.
River City jumped out to an early lead once again in game two, scoring two runs in the first inning and tacking on another in the second. Curran Redal singled to start the game off Gateway RHP JaVaun West (2-4) and advanced to second base on a walk. Both runners then came around to score on a two-RBI single by Danny Canela. Redal then delivered a one-out RBI single his next time up to give River City a 3-0 lead in the second inning.
Gateway was held scoreless until the sixth inning when they put the go-ahead run on second base. Richard Seigel walked with one out and advanced to third on a double by Ben Waldrip. Taylor Ard’s error plated Seigel, while Waldrip scored moments later on an RBI single by Madison Beaird to cut the deficit to 3-2.
However, the rally was halted when Garrett Vail stuckout swinging to end the inning and the threat. Gateway would then go down in order in the seventh inning to end the game.
The rubber game of the three-game series will take place Thursday night at GCS Ballpark. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. RHP Tyler Thompson (1-3, 3.61) will pitch for the Grizzlies and LHP Lucas Lester will take the mound for River City in his team debut. The game can be heard on the Grizzlies Radio Network, which airs on 101 ESPN’s digital channels and 1400 AM KJFF. Sam Levitt will call the action.