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Slammers survive late rally by Otters, have chance to sweep series

Joliet, IL – The Slammers earned their second win of the season on the strength of a two-run first inning, holding on for a 3-2 victory over the Evansville Otters.

Evansville struck first, with Patrick Lee coming in on a groundout for a 1-0 lead.

Joliet responded in the bottom half of the inning. Tommy Stevenson was hit by a pitch to load the bases after a Giovanni Garbella single and Matthew Warkentin walk.

Victor Nova drove in two runners with a double down the right field line to give the Slammers (2-0) a 2-1 lead.

They extended the lead in the bottom of the third after Matthew Warkentin reached first base on an error, one of three by the Otters (0-3) in the game. He advanced to third on another error before scoring on a Tommy Stevenson groundball, making the score 3-1.

Evansville threatened to close the gap in the top of the fifth when a double down the right field line by Patrick Lee advanced Bryan Rosario to third base, putting two runners in scoring position. John Lundgren shut down the threat for the Slammers, securing three straight outs to extinguish the Otters’ offensive spark.

The Otters cut the lead to one run in the top of the eighth. Jomar Reyes hit an infield single, advancing to third base on an error by Victor Nova. Austin Bost scored Reyes with a single down the right field line, making it 3-2.

With runners on first and second, Nick Bautista got two straight outs to preserve the lead. David Harrison closed the door shut in the bottom of the ninth, securing the save and a 3-2 Slammers victory.

Ricky Castro earned a win in his first start of the year for Joliet, pitching four innings and striking out six while allowing two hits and one run. Parker Brahms was tagged with the loss for Evansville.

The Slammers will go for the sweep tomorrow afternoon against the Otters at 1:05 p.m.

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