For the third consecutive night, the Quad Cities River Bandits lost a one-run game to the Peoria Chiefs at Dozer Park, as they fell by a score of 6-5 on Friday.
Both offenses scratched across runs in the opening frame, with Tyler Gentry tagging Carlos Lunn for an RBI single that plated Jeison Guzman, and Pedro Pages smacking a two-run homer off of Asa Lacy to give the Chiefs the early 2-1 lead.
The former first round pick settled down in the second for the Bandits as Lacy matched Lunn’s scoreless top half with three-straight “Ks” in the bottom half. But in the third, Matt Chamberlain would end a chain of five Lacy strikeouts with a solo homer that extended Peoria’s lead to 3-1.
After the first, Lunn scattered just three baserunners into the fifth and got even more help from his offense thanks to Tyler Reichenborn, who dug the Bandit’s hole one run deeper with an RBI triple off of newly entered Dante Biasi.
A pair of run-scoring singles from Leandro Cedeno in the sixth and Moises Castillo in the seventh grabbed two more runs for the Chiefs off of Biasi and Jonah Dipoto respectively and made the game 6-1 in favor of the home team going into the eighth.
The Quad Cities bats came to life in the final two innings and awoke to the tune of Nick Loftin’s fourth home run of the year in the top of the eighth. Four batters later, Fabian Blanco hit Jimmy Govern with the bases loaded to bring the River Bandits within three.
In the top of the ninth, Freddy Pacheco issued a leadoff walk to Tucker Bradley and then, after striking out the next two batters, surrendered a pair of runs to Vinnie Pasquantino, who launched his league-leading 11th jack of the season to cut the Peoria lead to 6-5.
However, after a mound visit, Pacheco settled down and struck out Gentry for his second save of the year and to secure at least a series split for the Chiefs with a 6-5 win.
Lacy (1-3), who recorded a career-high nine strikeouts in 4.1 innings, allowed four runs on four hits and took the loss for Quad Cities, while Carlos Lunn (2-1) and his seven-inning gem earned the win thanks to just one run on seven hits, no walks, and four punchouts.
The River Bandits will look to bounce back behind RHP Zach Haake (2-1, 4.88), while Peoria will throw RHP Logan Gragg (0-2, 3.94) and look to win the series on Saturday with first pitch at Dozer Park scheduled for 6:35 p.m. CDT.