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Timely Hitting Propels 'Hawks Past Lincoln 5-3

FARGO, ND – Having jumped out to an early lead, the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks watched their lead dwindle through the middle innings but timely hitting in the bottom of the eighth propelled them to their third straight win over the Lincoln Saltdogs 5-3 with 3,076 spectators looking on.

Rookie Chase Cunningham started on the mound for the 'Dogs and his lack of experience showed early. Making only his third professional start, he gave up three runs on four hits, highlighted by a Joe Dunigan two RBI single pushed to right giving the 'Hawks a 3-0 lead.

Dunigan went 1-for-4 on the night with a pair of RBIs but his lone hit extended his hitting streak to ten games. A talk with his father and tips from hitting coach Kole Zimmerman have helped his swing come around. Dunigan said, “I've just been moving my hands up which has helped me see the ball better and get the bat around faster. When it comes down to it it's all about being patient.” 

Ty Kelley got the nod for Fargo-Moorhead and the right-hander had to work his way out of jams early on. He faced four batters in each of the first three frames and each inning a Saltdog moved their way into scoring position. Kelley stranded a pair of runners on second base and stranded Matt Forgatch on third in the third inning leaving him unscathed after the first nine outs. 

Lincoln would put one on the board in the fourth. Mike Gilmartin sent a liner past Kelley's into center and would be driven in two batters later on a single from Jeremy Hamilton making it 3-1.

After the Hamilton single Kelley went on to retire seven straight batters, including the side in the fifth and sixth innings. The Saltdogs capitalized in the seventh on a leadoff walk issued to Ryan Wiggins would wheel to third on a Hamilton single to right bringing Bryan Joynt to the plate. Joynt grounded into the 6-4-3 double play but Wiggins scored making it 3-2.

Kelley would give way to Nick Cooney in the top of the eighth inning. He left in line for the win, having gone seven innings while allowing just two runs on six hits with a pair of walks and four strikeouts. Cooney forced Forgatch to pop out to Penprase at short but Aaron Payne followed by roping a double off the left-field wall. He would then walk Mitch Canham and Doug Simunic went to the bullpen and Tyler Thompson. Facing clean-up hitter Curt Smith, Thompson issued a walk after loading the count which in turn loaded the bases. Gilmartin batted next and sent a fly ball to deep center plating Payne on the sac fly tying the game 3-3. Thompson would strike out Wiggins ending the inning.

Meanwhile, Chase Cunningham went from looking like a rookie in the first to a seasoned veteran for the next six innings. After the Dunigan single, Cunningham proceeded to retire 21 of 22 batters through 7.1 innings pitched. The lone batter to reach would be Ryan Pineda who beat out an infield single on a ground ball hit near second base. 

Cunningham returned for the eighth inning and his arm showed clear signs of fatigue after tossing 97 pitches through seven innings. Pineda led off the frame with a double off the wall in left. Muren followed with a line drive RBI single pushed opposite field plating Pineda for the eventual go-ahead run. Mozingo then stepped to the plate and sliced a double down the line in left scoring the gazelle Muren all the way from first giving the RedHawks a 5-3 lead and signaling the end of the line for Cunningham. Pineda commented that patience was the key in the bottom of the eighth saying, “He started me out with a curveball in the dirt and I just waited for him to give me something (that I could hit). Luckily it got to three and two and he game one I took advantage of.”

Reigning American Association Pitcher of the Week Mike Nesseth came on looking to record his 13th save of the season. He retired the side giving the RedHawks their third straight win while ensuring their fourth consecutive series victory.

Ty Kelley walked away with a no-decision while Tyler Thompson (3-2) took the win for his two outs recorded in the top of the eighth. Chase Cunningham (0-1) suffered his first professional loss after going 7.1 innings and giving up five runs on eight hits with three strikeouts.

With the win the RedHawks have now jumped two games ahead of Sioux Falls in the North Division and stand at 32-50 while Lincoln drops their fifth straight game and falls to 30-52. The series finale is scheduled for tomorrow night with a battle of leftys as Tyler Alexander (2-5, 3.39 ERA) takes the ball countered by Kevin McGovern (4-7, 5.31 ERA) for Lincoln. First pitch is at 7:02 p.m with a 6:40 pre-game show on 740 AM The Fan.

 

Game Date: 08/19/2015

Lincoln Saltdogs  3 AT Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks  5

                                 YTD                                   YTD
Lincoln            AB  R  H BI   AVG  Fargo              AB  R  H BI   AVG
M.Forgatch CF       4  0  1  0  .270  Z.Penprase SS       4  1  1  0  .291
A.Payne 2B          4  1  2  0  .251  D.Muren CF          4  2  2  1  .262
M.Canham 3B         3  0  0  0  .302  C.Mozingo LF        4  1  2  1  .323
C.Smith DH          3  0  0  0  .301  J.Bonfe 1B          3  0  0  1  .292
M.Gilmartin SS      2  1  1  1  .261  J.Dunigan RF        4  0  1  2  .238
R.Wiggins C         3  1  0  0  .229  L.Bailey C          4  0  0  0  .241
J.Hamilton 1B       4  0  3  1  .221  C.Valerio DH        3  0  0  0  .275
B.Joynt RF          4  0  0  0  .246  M.Wing 3B           3  0  0  0  .235
T.White LF          4  0  0  0  .196  R.Pineda 2B         3  1  2  0  .248
                   31  3  7  2                           32  5  8  5

Lincoln              0 0 0   1 0 0   1 1 0 -  3  7  2
Fargo                3 0 0   0 0 0   0 2 x -  5  8  0
2B--M.Forgatch (13), A.Payne (8), C.Mozingo (31), R.Pineda (5).
RBI--M.Gilmartin (26), J.Hamilton (30), D.Muren (29), C.Mozingo (54),
J.Bonfe (29), J.Dunigan  2 (50). SF--M.Gilmartin (4), J.Bonfe (2).
SB--A.Payne (5), M.Gilmartin (3). E--M.Canham (8), C.Cunningham (1). 
LOB--Lincoln 6, Fargo 4. DP--R. Pineda(2B) - Z. Penprase(SS) - J.
Bonfe(1B), M. Wing(3B) - J. Bonfe(1B). 
                                                                YTD
                                 IP   H   R  ER  BB  SO  HR     ERA
 Lincoln
C.Cunningham (L,0-1)            7.1   8   5   5   0   3   0    4.22
R.Fennell                       0.2   0   0   0   0   1   0    2.84
                                8     8   5   5   0   4   0
 Fargo
T.Kelley                        7.0   6   2   2   2   4   0    4.59
N.Cooney                        0.1   1   1   1   1   0   0    3.72
T.Thompson (W,3-2)              0.2   0   0   0   1   1   0    5.95
M.Nesseth (S,13)                1.0   0   0   0   0   1   0    2.75
                                9     7   3   3   4   6   0
SO--M.Forgatch, M.Canham, R.Wiggins 2, B.Joynt 2, J.Dunigan 3, L.Bailey.
BB--M.Canham, C.Smith, M.Gilmartin, R.Wiggins. BF--C.Cunningham 30 (90),
R.Fennell 3 (79), T.Kelley 27 (318), N.Cooney 3 (39), T.Thompson 3 (88),
M.Nesseth 3 (87). P-S--C.Cunningham 103-69, R.Fennell 9-8, T.Kelley 97-58,
N.Cooney 14-8, T.Thompson 16-7, M.Nesseth 8-6. 
T--2:21.  A--3076

Weather: 73 F, Sunny 

 



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