Marion, Ill. - The Gateway Grizzlies fell 3-2 in 11 innings on Thursday night as they wrapped up their road set against the Southern Illinois Miners. The Grizzlies now head back to GCS Ballpark for the start of a three-game series against the Joliet Slammers that begins on Friday evening.
Gateway (40-42) received a stellar performance from Vince Molesky. The righty went 7.2 innings while giving up just a pair of runs.
The Miners (54-27) scored twice in the bottom half of the fourth inning against Molesky. Nolan Earley began the scoring with an RBI single and Alex De Leon drove in a run with a sac fly to make it 2-0.
The Grizzlies responded immediately in the fifth against Southern Illinois RHP Brooks Trujillo. With two outs and nobody on, Ben Waldrip and Sam Fischer laced two straight singles. Logan Davis then walked to load the bases. Cody Livesay put Gateway on the scoreboard with a run-scoring single to left field.
RHP Kyle Tinius replaced Trujillo and walked Seth Heck to bring in the tying run. Tinius would ultimately toss 2.1 solid innings in relief.
The score remained 2-2 all the way until the 11th. After Molesky exited, RHP Kevin Jefferis worked out of trouble in the eighth and threw a scoreless ninth. LHP Rich Masheri threw a scoreless eighth for the Miners while Mott did the same in the ninth.
The battle of bullpens continued into extra innings. RHP Adam Loped kept Gateway off the scoreboard in the tenth while RHP Will LaMarche tossed a scoreless bottom half of the frame for the Grizzlies.
The international tie breaker rule took effect in the 11th. The Grizzlies started the inning with Heck on second base and no outs. Zach Lavy grounded out to first base as Heck moved to third. Craig Massoni and Tyler Tewell recorded two consecutive outs and Heck never came home as Lopez (1-0) escaped the situation.
In the bottom half, Shane Kennedy began the inning on second base for the Miners. Kennedy moved to third on a groundout by Craig Massey. After LaMarche (1-2) intentionally walked Earley to put runners at the corners, he induced a ground ball to third base from De Leon.
Lavy elected to try for a double play rather than throwing home, but the toss to first by Heck sailed wide of first base. Kennedy raced home with the winning run.
Livesay and Fischer paced Gateway's offense with two hits a piece.
The Grizzlies and Slammers play on Friday night at 7:05 p.m. The game can be heard on the Grizzlies Radio Network, which airs Friday on 1400 AM KJFF and online at www.GatewayGrizzlies.com/Radio. Sam Levitt and Matt Sabados have the call.
For tickets, please call (618) 337-3000 or visit www.GatewayGrizzlies.com.