SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (CANARIES) — They say pressure makes diamonds, and it was no exception for the Birds Saturday. The Birds (23-23) shined in pressure situations in their 8-4 win over the Sioux City Explorers (23-24). The Birds guaranteed themselves a series win with the victory over the Explorers.
The Canaries were down early but battled right back. Luis Pollorena pitched six innings, allowed five hits and four runs. All four runs scored because of Sioux City home runs. Pollorena also struck out five. He was in line for the win when Sam Bragg entered the game in the seventh with the bases loaded. He struck out Jose Sermo to end the threat. Sermo homered twice in the game.
Bragg pitched the top of the eighth inning as well; however, this time he had a four-run cushion as the Birds scored three insurance runs in the seventh. Burt Reynolds sealed the game after doubling off the left-field wall scoring Ebert from second.
“I just wanted to get the job done,” Reynolds said. “We just gotta keep plugging away and trying to get wins.”
The Explorers scored first on a two-run home run, but the Canaries answered in the bottom of the second on a couple of RBI singles from Andrew Ely and Brett Vertigan.
The Birds took the lead in the bottom of the fifth. The Birds loaded the bases; Kevin Taylor and Alay Lago both singled and the Canaries were up 5-3.
The three runs in the bottom of the seventh secured the win for the Birds.
The Canaries will be back in action Sunday when they take on the Sioux City Explorers in game three of the series.