GARY, Ind. - Ryan Stovall hit a grand slam in the fourth inning to lead Fargo to an 11-3 win over the RailCats in the series opener on Friday night in front of 4,343 fans at U. S. Steel Yard.
The RedHawks took the lead in the third inning against RailCats starter Jon Gulbransen. Eric Campbell hit a sac fly and Jon Gaston lined a single to left to give Fargo a 2-0 advantage. Stovall hit a grand slam to right in the fourth inning to put the RailCats in a 6-0 hole.
Defensive mistakes by the RedHawks gift-wrapped three runs for the 'Cats in the fifth. With two on and two out, Adam Klein sent a fly ball to left that was dropped by Gaston, allowing a pair of runs to score. Mike Massaro then singled to center to score Klein and cut the deficit to 6-3. Massaro extended his hit streak to nine games, the longest by a RailCat this season. He is hitting 18-for-36 (.500) during the streak.
Fargo added a run in the sixth on an RBI double by Nic Jackson. Jon Gulbransen (1-1) allowed seven runs, six earned in five plus innings for the loss.
The RedHawks tacked on four more runs in the ninth, capped by Stovall's two-run triple. He was 3-for-5 with six RBI and two runs scored in the game.
Paul Burnside (7-4) held the 'Cats to three unearned runs in six innings, lowering his ERA to 2.93 in the victory.
The middle game of the three-game set will be on Saturday night at 6:10. It is Beach Bash night, with a RailCats beach towel giveaway and the RailCats will wear beach-style jerseys that will be auctioned off after the game. Morgan Coombs (4-5, 5.10) will be on the bump for Gary.