SAUGET, Ill. — Starting pitcher Ian Kahaloa opened the game Friday night with five perfect innings, Zak Taylor homered, and the Gateway Grizzlies held on late for a 5-2 win over the River City Rascals at GCS Credit Union Ballpark.
Kahaloa (3-6) matched his career high with 11 strikeouts over 6 1/3 innings and allowed only two runs on two hits for the victory.
Gateway (35-53) struck first in the third inning on a Connor Owings sacrifice fly that scored Gunner Buhner, who had singled to lead off the frame and moved to third on a Taylor double.
With Kahaloa cruising, the Grizzlies tacked on three more runs in the fourth: Shawon Dunston Jr. singled, stole second, and scored on an RBI double by Andrew Daniel, who scored on a Wesley Jones sac fly. Taylor's solo home run — his second as a professional — just cleared the right-field fence and pushed the lead to 4-0.
After the Rascals (52-37) bounced back with a pair of runs in the sixth, the Grizzlies added an eighth-inning insurance tally on an Owings RBI single.
Grant Black struck out all three batters he faced in the eighth and Geoff Bramblett — despite having to work around a bases-loaded, two-out situation after a walk, catcher's interference, and infield single — finished his 13th save in as many chances. The 24-year-old Alabama native has thrown 30 straight innings since he last allowed an earned run June 16.
Gateway and River City will continue their three-game set with a 7:05 p.m. CDT first pitch Saturday.
ABOUT THE GATEWAY GRIZZLIES: The Gateway Grizzlies are a professional baseball team, located a mere 100-yards from I-255 (10 minutes from downtown St. Louis). The Grizzlies offer baseball fans entertainment, the likes of which are difficult to find - affordable, family, fun in the comfortable GCS Credit Union Ballpark with a great view of the St. Louis skyline. For tickets or general information please visit gatewaygrizzlies.com or call 618.337.3000.
ABOUT THE FRONTIER LEAGUE: The Frontier League is a professional, independent baseball organization. Since its inception, the Frontier League has provided millions of fans to a fun and exciting baseball experience within the American Midwest. Consisting of 10 teams in two divisions and 96 game schedules, the league is recognized for the amount of talented athletes that are picked up by various MLB teams every year.