The Normal CornBelters (35-38) topped the Traverse City Beach Bums (38-35) 5-2 Tuesday Night at the Corn Crib. Normal takes the first game of their six-game home stand as they head into the final push of the season.
Steve Alexander gave the CornBelters the lead in the 2nd with towering home run over the left field wall to put Normal up 1-0.
Neither team scored again until the 5th inning as the CornBelters extended their lead. After a double by Mike Mobbs and a Daniel Cox single, Andrew Barbaro sent a long ball over the left-center field wall for a three-run homerun to give Normal a 4-0 lead.
Traverse City finally got on the board in the 7th. With two out and the bases loaded, Greg Burns launched a ground-rule double over the left-center field wall scoring Jeff Flagg and Tom Zebroski bringing the Beach Bums two runs closer 4-2.
Normal added some insurance in the 8th as Mobbs hit an RBI double with two outs. The two-bagger scored Frank Martinez putting the CornBelters ahead 5-2.
Bobby Pritchett (W, 7-3) worked 6 2/3 innings giving up two earned runs on four hits and striking out seven. The CornBelter starter did not allow a hit until the 5th inning. Beach Bum starter David Deminsky (L, 4-3) pitching five innings of baseball giving up four runs, all earned, on four hits. Marshall Schuler picked up his eighth save of the year after going one and two-thirds innings, giving up only one hit, and stranding the bases loaded in the 8th.
The series will continue Wednesday at 7 p.m. at the Corn Crib as Ryan Sheldon (8-5, 2.65) will throw for Normal and Scott Dunn (5-3, 2.22) takes the mound for Traverse City.