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Lake County Sentinel
Captains fall in slugfest to TinCaps 9-5 
(FORT WAYNE, IN) - The Fort Wayne TinCaps slugged their way past the Lake County Captains on Saturday night at Parkview Field in Fort Wayne. Brad Zunica and Austin Allen hit home runs for the TinCaps, as the Captains fell, 9-5.

Lake County and Fort Wayne traded runs in the early goings. Each side scored a run in the first inning and the game remained knotted at 1-1 until the top of the third. In the third, Nathan Lukes and Willi Castro helped put the Captains in front. Lukes ripped a leadoff triple and Castro came through immediately after with an RBI single that gave Lake County a 2-1 lead.

The TinCaps turned the tides in the bottom of the third inning, however. Lake County led, 2-1, going into the inning, but Fort Wayne stormed back with a two-out rally. After Captains starter Sam Hentges recorded the first two outs of the inning, the lefty hit Michael Gettys with a pitch. Gettys then stole second base and Allen roped an RBI double to centerfield to tie the game at 2-2. Ty France then worked a walk and Zunica delivered the big blow with a three-run home run to give Fort Wayne its first lead of the season, 5-2.

Fort Wayne kept piling on in the fourth inning with the help of two more free passes and some aggressive baserunning. River Stevens worked a leadoff walk and Peter Van Gansen dropped down a sacrifice bunt to move him up to second base. Stevens then stole third and Rod Boykin was hit by a pitch. With Boykin on first and Stevens on third, Boykin took off for second base as the left-hander Hentges made a pickoff throw to first base. First baseman Anthony Miller threw to second, but Boykin beat the throw and, as the throw went to second, Stevens took off for home and scored. Shortly thereafter, Ruddy Giron doubled to score Boykin and give the TinCaps a 7-2 lead.

After the TinCaps tacked on an insurance run in the sixth, the Captains put together a mini-rally in the top of the seventh. Nate Winfrey reached on a leadoff throwing error by TinCaps reliever Jerry Keel and Silento Sayles followed with a double to put a pair of runners in scoring position. Sam Haggerty then delivered an RBI groundout to score Winfrey and Bobby Ison knocked home Sayles with a single to cut the Captains’ deficit to 8-4. The following half inning, however, Allen hit a solo homer to right to extend the TinCaps’ lead to 9-4.

The Captains scored one final run in the ninth, but could not produce enough of a rally to come back. Hentges (0-1) took the loss for Lake County. The lefty pitched four innings and surrendered seven Fort Wayne runs on six hits. Hentges struck out four and walked two.

TinCaps reliever Elliot Ashbeck earned the win. Ashbeck (1-0) tossed three scoreless and hitless innings out of the bullpen. The right-hander walked one and struck out a pair.

The Captains finish their home-and-home series with Fort Wayne on Sunday afternoon at Parkview Field. First pitch in Fort Wayne is scheduled for 3:05 PM. RHP Matt Esparza is due to pitch for the Captains against TinCaps RHP Jacob Nix.
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​POSTED 04/10/2016 14:47