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Eric Peterson, Published July 26 2013

Sioux City stymies RedHawks at Newman

FARGO – A lack of control proved costly for the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks on Friday night.

Sioux City drew nine walks against F-M pitching. The Explorers used those free passes and a solid pitching performance from starter Ryan Lucero to earn a 3-1 American Association victory before 4,020 fans at Newman Outdoor Field.

Those nine walks tied the most the RedHawks have allowed in a game this season.

“Not too good,” RedHawks manager Doug Simunic said.

The RedHawks (40-26) have lost two of their past three games. However, F-M maintained its 6½-game lead over the St. Paul Saints in the North Division. St. Paul also lost Friday.

The RedHawks have a 5-4 record this season against Sioux City, which is in last place in the Central Division.

“These guys have given us a tough time all year,” RedHawks shortstop Zach Penprase said of the Explorers. “It’s just a tough team to beat. I don’t know why they give us a problem, but they do.”

The Explorers took the lead for good with two runs in the second inning. RedHawks starter Alex Caldera walked the first two batters he faced in the second. Both of those batters would later score. Austin Gallagher scored Sioux City’s first run on a Caldera throwing error. Caldera was trying to force out Gallagher at third base, but his throw was off target and allowed Gallagher to continue home.

Sioux City took a 2-1 lead after Bryan Pounds lined an RBI single into left field. That hit plated Luke Murton from third base.

“It’s just one of those days where we weren’t hitting and we made a few bad plays,” Penprase said. “Our defense has been keeping in most of the games this year.”

Caldera pitched six innings and allowed three runs, two of which were earned. The right-hander allowed just four hits, but walked six batters. Caldera has walked 11 batters over his past three starts.

“Caldera has just been in that little bit of a rut there,” Simunic said. “We’ve got to get him back going. I thought that last inning he pitched, if he can pitch like that, he would be good. … I keep telling him ‘You’re supposed to be my No. 1 guy.’ We’re going to have to iron it out with him.”

Lucero pitched 6 Xc innings, limiting the RedHawks to one earned run on four hits. The left-hander struck out seven and walked four. F-M scored its lone run in the first inning.

The RedHawks had chances to score late in the game, but left six runners on base over their last three at-bats. F-M loaded the bases in the seventh inning, but No. 3 hitter Nic Jackson struck out to end that scoring threat.

SIOUX CITY REDHAWKS

ab r h bi ab r h bi

Mesa cf 5 0 0 0 Pnprse ss 5 0 1 0

Kskd ss 4 1 1 0 Burquin 3b 2 1 0 0

Brows rf 4 0 1 0 Jackson cf 4 0 1 0

Gllghr 1b 3 1 1 0 Rthrford 2b 4 0 2 0

Murtn, dh 2 1 1 1 Brchld 1b 3 0 0 0

Ingchi lf 4 0 0 0 Alberts dh 2 0 0 0

Pnds 3b 3 0 1 1 Einertson lf 4 0 0 0

Mrtnz c 3 0 0 0 Snskie rf 4 0 1 0

Judah ph 0 0 0 0 Jennings c 4 0 1 0

Espnsa c 0 0 0 0

Young 2b 3 0 0 0

Totals 31 3 5 2 32 1 6 0

Sioux City 020 010 000 –3 5 0

RedHawks 100 000 000 –1 6 1

2B–Kaskadden (4), Retherford (14). CS–Barrows (2), Sosnoskie (1), SB–Brachold (7), Alberts (4), LOB–SC 10, FM 11. E–Caldera (3).

SIOUX CITY

IP H R ER BB SO

Lucero, W 6Xc 4 1 1 4 7

Kennedy Xc 2 0 0 1 1

Bdshbugh, S 1Xc 0 0 0 2 3

REDHAWKS

IP H R ER BB SO

Caldera 6 4 3 2 6 6

King 3 1 0 0 3 2

Umpires–Home: Pascucci. First: Krauss. Third: Ballou. Time–3:07. A–4,020.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Eric Peterson at (701) 241-5513.