After being shutout and held to just one hit last night, the Quad Cities River Bandits responded with a four-homer effort to top the Beloit Snappers 11-5 on Wednesday night at Modern Woodmen Park.
The visitors manufactured a run in the first with the combo of Thomas Jones’ leadoff hit-by-pitch and stolen base that set up for Will Banfield’s run-scoring single off of Quad Cities’ starter, Anthony Veneziano.
Quad Cities was quick to respond however, as Tyler Gentry launched his first home run of the night, a three-run blast, that stole the lead from Kyle Nicolas in the bottom of the first and made it 3-1 Bandits.
Homers continued to fly in the second, as Nick Loftin lofted his third bomb of the year to left center that scored Tucker Bradley and expanded his team’s lead to 5-1.
Now working with the lead, Veneziano settled down over his next three innings and faced the minimum from the second onward while striking out a career-high seven Snappers before passing the torch to Will Klein for the fifth.
After the right-hander set down Beloit three-up three-down in the top half, Quad Cities extended its lead to 7-1 in the bottom of the fifth with an RBI single from Vinnie Pasquantino and a sac-fly from Gentry who recorded his fourth RBI of the day.
Klein surrendered a run on a wild pitch in the sixth, but saw it earned back in the seventh on Gentry’s second homer of the game; a two-run fly over the wall in left that scored Pasquantino and not only pushed the Bandits’ lead to eight, but plated his team’s single-game best fifth and sixth RBI of the night.
Beloit hit its first and only homer of the night off of Garrett Davila in the eighth who surrendered Kameron Misner’s second homer of the season, but in line with the night’s theme, Eric Cole put an end to an 0-18 slump and answered with a two-run dinger in the bottom half that plated Bradley and the River Bandits’ 11th run of the game.
While closing out the ninth, Jonah Dipoto allowed a run on a balk, but stranded two men on with a groundball from Thomas Jones to close the door on Quad Cities’ 16th win of the season.
The win went to Klein (2-0) who allowed one run over his two innings of relief work, while Nicolas (2-1) took his first loss of the season after allowing a season-high five runs over three innings.
With the series tied at 1-1, the River Bandits will look to Grant Gambrell (2-0, 4.67) for the start tomorrow and will face Beloits’ Zach King (0-4, 6.64) at 6:30 p.m. CDT at Modern Woodmen Park.