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Birds get bats going at Lincoln



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LINCOLN, Neb. – The Sioux Falls Pheasants strung together five straight hits to rally for five runs in the seventh inning on Monday night, vaulting past the Lincoln Saltdogs on their way to an 8-4 win.

Trailing 2-1, Cristian Guerrero and Trevor Lawhorn drew back-to-back walks to begin the seventh. After Al Quintana singled to load the bases, Joe Anthonsen cracked a single to center, his third the night, to tie the game. Reggie Abercrombie and Jared Bolden followed with RBI singles, and a fielding error permitted a fifth run home.

Lincoln shrunk the deficit to 6-4 in the bottom of the eighth on Chris McMurray’s two-run home run, but Bolden and Abercrombie combined again for consecutive RBI singles in the ninth to put the game away.

The Pheasants (38-49) won the opener of a four-game series and snapped a three-game losing skid.

After giving up a leadoff home run and an RBI single in the first inning, Pheasants starter Mitchell Clegg (8-5) held the Saltdogs scoreless over the next six innings on four hits. Clegg earned his eighth win with his ninth quality start, walking four and striking out three in seven innings.

Kyle Mertins entered in the eighth inning after McMurray’s home run and record the inning’s final out. He followed with a 1-2-3 ninth for his fourth save of the year.

Anthonsen and Abercrombie each had three hits to lead a Pheasants offense that cracked 14 hits total. Anthonsen now has 407 career hits in Sioux Falls, approaching Felix Pagan’s club record of 416 with 13 games remaining.

Yohan Gonzalez (1-1) suffered the loss in relief of Justin Edwards.

Game two of a four-game road series with the Lincoln Saltdogs is at 6:35 p.m. on Tuesday, August 21 in Lincoln, Neb.
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