Sermo Homers, Drives in Three in Explorers Victory
Sioux Falls, SD (September 3, 2021) – The Sioux City Explorers were able to keep pace in the South Division playoff chase with an 8-4 victory over the Sioux Falls Canaries in a game in which starting pitcher Zach Hedges fanned a season high ten batters and culminated in the 400th victory of Steve Montgomery’s managerial career.
For the first half of the ball game, each side traded runs back and forth. In the second the X’s broke a 1-1 tied with a Jose Sermo RBI single and a fielder’s choice to go in front 3-1. But a two out two run home run from Jabari Henry knotted things up again.
Once again the X’s went in front in the fifth when Blake Tiberi brought Sermo home on a two out RBI single. Sioux Falls answered back immediately again with a run scoring knock from Mitch Glasser to knot it up 4-4.
From there however Zach Hedges settled in, he stranded the Canaries go ahead run at third base and then allowed only one other base runner in his further two innings of work. He surrendered four runs in seven innings on eight hits while striking out a season high ten and walking just one.
Sioux City took the lead for good on a Canary blunder in the sixth. Mitch Glasser was unable to field a ground ball at second and his throw to first couldn’t be handled with two outs and the bases loaded, leading to a two run error putting Sioux City on top 6-4.
The loss was shouldered by DJ Sharabi (0-2) who allowed those two unearned runs in one inning with a hit and a pair of walks.
Sioux City added to the total in the eighth inning when Sermo blasted a two run home run to right field giving the X’s a 8-4 advantage. The homer was his 29th of the season and the 100th of the year for the X’s as a team. It is only the second time Sioux City has reached the 100 home run plateau as the 1997 club hit a franchise record 106.
In the victory, manager Steve Montgomery notched his 400th career win with the Explorers. He became the second manager to reach the 400 win mark, and is now 26 wins shy of Ed Nottle’s team record of 426.
With the win the X’s are able to keep pace with the Lincoln Saltdogs who beat the Houston Apollos at Haymarket Park to open their four game series. Sioux City remains a game back of Lincoln and the X’s hold the tiebreaker.
The series between the two I-29 rivals continues on Saturday afternoon at 3:05 pm for the start of a doubleheader. Sioux City will send LHP Patrick Ledet (8-6, 6.48) to the mound for game one and are still TBA for game two. Sioux Falls will give the ball to LHP Ty Culbreth (7-8, 5.52) in the first game and then LHP Kris Regas (0-1, 9.00) for game two.
by Connor Ryan, Sioux City Explorers