Sioux City, IA-The Explorers used solid pitching and timely, late-game hitting to defeat the Rockland Boulders 3-1 Wednesday night at Lewis & Clark Park.
With the win, Sioux City (16-24) holds a 2-games-to-1 series lead in its only interleague foray of the season. The X’s started the night’s scoring with a single tally in the third. Dillon Usiak led off the inning with a line-drive single to left-center. Todd Jennings (pictured) followed with a single to center that pushed Usiak to third. Following a fly-out, Andres Perez extended his hitting streak to nine games with an infield single that drove in Usiak from third.
After three straight scoreless innings, Rockland (17-14) squared the game in the seventh. Steve Nyisztor walked to lead off the inning. Sioux City made a pitching change and relieved starter Wade Morrison, who worked his longest outing of the season. With one out, Stephen Cardullo stroked a single to left that moved Nyisztor to third. The next batter, Sean O’Hare, directed a deep fly ball to left-center that turned into a sacrifice and allowed Nyisztor to tag from third for a 1-1 tie.
The Explorers regained the lead in the bottom of the seventh and never looked back. Following a ground out, Amos Ramon doubled to the left-center field gap. After a fly-out and a pitching change by Rockland, Todd Jennings delivered his third hit of the night on an RBI line-drive to left that scored Ramon for a 2-1 lead. A walk and an error loaded the bases, and Rene Tosoni made it 3-1 as he punched a single to right that plated Jennings. The Boulders stranded a runner in the top of the ninth after a two-out single.
Sioux City reliever Geoff Broussard posted the win. Broussard (2-1) worked two innings and gave up two base hits. Sean Bierman suffered the loss for Rockland. Bierman (1-4) lasted six-and-two-thirds and allowed two earned runs on six hits with two strikeouts and one walk. Chris Bodishbaugh pitched the ninth and gave up a hit but notched his fifth save of the season. Explorers right-hander Wade Morrison started the game and went six innings with one strikeout and one walk. He gave up just one earned run on three hits.
At the plate, Todd Jennings went 3-for-4 with all singles, a run scored, and an RBI. For the Boulders, Joe Maloney was 3-for-4 with a double and two singles. Rockland managed just six hits on the night and made three errors.
Sioux City closes out its seven-game home stand Thursday night with game four against Rockland of the Can-Am League. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. For ticket information and promotion specials at Lewis & Clark Park, call 712-277-WINS or visit the Explorers website at www.xsbaseball.com.