05/10/2014 10:00 PM
Pitcher Blake Monar struck out five batters in 3.0 scoreless innings on Saturday night.
(PADUCAH, KENTUCKY) – Evansville pitcher Blake Monar collected five strikeouts in 3.0 innings pitched as the Otters rallied back to beat the Southern Illinois Miners 4-3.
Outfielder John Schultz was 4-for-5 in the win as first baseman Nik Balog also collected four hits in the Otters first victory of the exhibition season.
After the two teams were rained out on Friday night in Evansville, the Saturday night contest was scheduled to last 13 innings.
The Otters started the scoring early when Schultz led off the game with a single and scored a few batters later on an RBI single from designated hitter Jeremy Nowak.
Monar, making his first appearance since tearing his ACL last July 29, held the Miners scoreless over his 3.0 innings, yielding just two hits and just one walk.
The Otters held the 1-0 lead until the bottom of the sixth inning. Evansville turned three double plays to maintain the advantage until an Aaron Gates RBI single evened up the score.
Each team had a chance to score the go-ahead run over the next few innings but the 1-1 score held until the bottom of the 11th. The Miners used four hits in the frame to pull ahead 3-1 only to see the Otters tie and take the lead in the 12th. A bases loaded hit by pitch to catcher Ryan McChesney pulled Evansville within a run and a two-run double from infielder Cory Urquhart inched the Otters ahead for the 4-3 win.
Evansville native Taylor Dennis retired all three batters, including two strikeouts in a scoreless inning.
The Otters will complete their exhibition season on Tuesday at Rent One Park in Marion, Illinois. It will be the final meeting between the Miners and the Otters in the exhibition season. First pitch on the Kids Day game is 10:05 am CT.
The Otters start the 2014 season on the road at the Normal CornBelters on May 16. Otters Opening Day will take place on Wednesday, May 21st at historic Bosse Field with a unique doubleheader against the Rockford Aviators. First pitch will take place at 5:35 pm CT.