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X’s With Extra Inning Victory Over Cleburne

Cleburne, TX  - Back and forth the Explorers and Railroaders went on Friday night. For the third straight four game series opener the Explorers played in an extra inning game. For the second straight series came away with an extra inning victory, this time with a 6-5 win over the Cleburne Railroaders. 

Kyle Wren lead off the game with an eight pitch at bat that ended with him hitting a triple to right field. Michael Lang drove him home with a sacrifice fly to center field making it 1-0 X’s. 

Cleburne responded in the third with a two run inning, KC Huth started the inning with a walk, he scored from first on a double by Jonathan Rodriguez tying the game. Rodriguez would advance to third on an infield single and score on sacrifice fly to right by Chase Simpson making it 2-1 Railroaders. 

In the fifth Zawada and Kelly began the inning with back to back singles. A ground rule double by Wren scored Zawada and tied the game 2-2. Kelly would score on a ground out from Nate Samson and the X’s lead 3-2. 

John Nester lead off the sixth for the Railroaders with a solo home run to tie the game 3-3. Cleburne would then jump out in front in the seventh. Rodriguez doubled to lead off the inning and Zach Nehrir walked. Simpson picked up his league leading 30th RBI of the season with a base hit to right, and Nester beat out a double play ball scoring Nehrir giving Cleburne a late lead of 5-3. 

The top of the eighth saw the X’s tie the game in grand fashion. Samson reached on an error by his counterpart at short. Jose Sermo then blasted his first home run of the season to left field tying the game 5-5. 

Cleburne seriously threatened to walk off with the win in the bottom of the ninth as they loaded the bases with one out but Nathan Gercken came out of the bullpen for Sioux City and picked up the final two outs of the inning leaving the bases loaded for the Railroaders. 

Sioux City took the lead in the back and forth game for good in the top of the tenth. Samson walked to open the frame, and got to scoring position on a balk. After an infield single moved him to third Drew Stankiewicz delivered yet another clutch extra innings hit for the Explorers to score Samson from third and the X’s were up 6-5.

The bottom of the tenth of course had to have drama for this game. Matt Pobereyko was called on to get the save, and Cleburne pinch hit Hunter Clanin with one out and no one aboard. Clanin hit a blooper down the right field line and Michael Lang tried to dive and make the play but couldn’t come up with the ball and Clanin scooted into third with a one out triple. But with the game tying run just ninety feet away Pobereyko was cool under pressure as he struck out the following two batters to ensure the win for Sioux City. 

The Explorers and Railroaders will play game two of the series on Saturday night with first pitch set for 7:06 pm. Eric Karch will be on the bump for the Explorers and will be opposed by southpaw Michael Gunn for Cleburne.