The home team Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks got ahead in the first time hitting. With one out, Ronnie Bourquin drew a walk on five pitches. Nic Jackson was the next in order, and after getting ahead in the count, he got his pitch on 3-1 and sent a line-drive over the right field wall for a two-run home run.
Third inning brought a first change of score, when the Sioux City Explorers got on the scoreboard and took the 3-2 lead. Amos Ramon waited out a 1-1 pitch and swung a heavy bat for a solo home run. With one out, Michael Lang trotted out an infield single, and after Oscar Mesa walked, Tim Colwell collected one RBI. The Sioux City’s third run scored on a fielder’s choice.
Extending the lead came for the Explorers in top of the fourth, courtesy of Peter Barrows (reaching on a base hit) scoring on a passed ball and Roman (also reaching on a base hit), when Michael Lang brought Roman in to make it 5-2.
The top of the fifth saw Sioux City adding yet another run. With one man out, Brock Kjeldgaard found a right-field gap for a double. The easy RBI went to Dillon Usiak, as he waited out a bases loaded walk. At that point, the scoreboard read 6-2 for the visiting Explorers.
Friday night’s 4,264 fans cheered on the ‘Hawks as they tied the ballgame at 6 apiece in the bottom of the fifth. Ronnie Bourquin drew a walk to open up the frame and scored immediately on Jackson’s double. With one out already, Sawyer Carroll reached on an error by a second baseman, which granted him an RBI in the process. Three straight hits by Michael Thompson, Brandon Tripp and Travis Higgs meant the score changed to 6-5, and with Anthony Kaskadden’s sacrifice fly to deep center field the score was tied.
From that point forward, the next six runs were all for the Explorers. Three came in the top of the sixth. When Kevin Fuqua walked all three hitters he faced, Rene Tosoni scored the go-ahead run on a passed ball, then an RBI double by Kjeldgaard increased the lead to two, and the score became 9-6 when Kjeldgaard scored on a wild pitch by Coty Woods, who relieved Fuqua.
Without an answer from the RedHawks, the visitor piled on another three in the top of the seventh frame. A similar scenario unraveled, as Usiak walked, and Michael Lang’s sacrifice bunt was not fielded cleanly by Harris, who took an error on the play. Another walk to Oscar Mesa meant the bases loaded, and even though Harris locked in and struck out the next two batters, a hit-by-pitch was one run crossing home plate, followed by a 2 RBI single by Peter Barrows, 12-6 Explorers.
After being silent for two innings, the Fargo-Moorhead’s hitters brought in one run. The runner crossing home was Nic Jackson, scoring on a base hit by Sawyer Carroll. However, that run was immediately answered by two from Sioux City when Colwell found a gap for a single, and Rene Tosoni followed up with a line-drive 2 run home run.
The final score was 14-8, as the RedHawks were able to add one more run in the bottom of the ninth inning. The second game of the series is scheduled for Saturday with the first pitch at 6pm. Purchase your tickets at (701) 235-6161 or by clicking on www.fmredhawks.com.