Zawada Homers in Explorers Victory over Canaries
Sioux City, IA (July 13, 2021) – A four run first inning and a three run seventh provided the Sioux City Explorers all the offense they would need in a 7-6 win over the Sioux Falls Canaries.
After the Canaries got on the board in the top half of the first with one run, the X’s wasted no time tying the game up. Chris Clare, the second batter in the inning, doubled down the right field line to score Chase Harris from first to tie it at one.
A few batters later with two on, Sebastian Zawada smacked his second first inning home run in as many days. After a grand slam in yesterday’s contest, today Zawada hit a three run homer to give Sioux City a 4-1 lead at the end of one.
The lead would disappear for the X’s however as Jabari Henry hit a two run homer in the third to pull the Canaries to within a run.
And in the fifth, with runners at the corners after a pick off play across the diamond at first Cade Gotta stole home to tie the game at four.
Patrick Ledet took a no decision for the Explorers in a bounce back performance as the lefty tossed five and two-thirds innings allowing four runs on seven hits with eight strikeouts and three walks going over the century mark in pitches for the second time this year with 107.
The game remained tied until the seventh, until the X’s were able to put together an interesting rally. After a lead off walk to Mitch Ghelfi, Chase Harris bunted his way aboard. Chris Clare in an attempt to sacrifice himself ended up reaching on a throwing error by Canaries starter Tyler Garkow, the error allowed Ghelfi to score from second and give the X’s a 5-4 lead.
Harris would score on a LT Tolbert base hit to right field, and Tolbert after reaching second on a fielder’s choice, scored on back to back wild pitches to build the Sioux City lead to 7-4.
Tyler Garkow (2-5) took the loss for Sioux Falls as he had been cruising until that seventh inning. He allowed six runs, five earned in six and one-third innings of work as he allowed seven hits while walking three and tying a season high with ten strikeouts.
For the X’s it was Matt Quintana (3-0) earning the win in relief as he replaced Patrick Ledet with two outs in the sixth, and struck out the side in a perfect seventh inning.
Sioux Falls made it interesting in the ninth as a throwing error on what could have been a game-ending double play allowed Cade Gotta to bring a run home on a single. A sac fly made it a 7-6 ball game. But Nate Gercken earned his first save in four years and first as a Sioux City Explorer as he struck out Jabari Henry to finish the game.
With the win the Explorers ended a five game losing streak. They will continue the four game series with Sioux Falls on Wednesday night with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 pm. Sioux City will send Joe Riley (2-2, 6.75) to the hill, he will be faced by Angel Ventura (3-5, 6.75) for Sioux Falls.
By Connor Ryan, Sioux City Explorers