SIOUX CITY, Iowa – Nick Tepesch pitched six scoreless innings with only three hits allowed, two walks and four strikeouts, and the ‘Dogs evened up the series with a 4-1 win over the Sioux City Explorers at Mercy Field at Lewis And Clark Park on Friday night.
At one point, Tepesch had retired 13 consecutive X’s from the 2nd to the 6th innings, and he allowed just one hit over the last four to win his first game as a ‘Dog in his 150th professional start.
The ‘Dogs took their first lead of 2019 with Cody Regis drove in Tyler Moore with an RBI groundout in the 4th, and Curt Smith later scored on Noah Cummings’s sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.
In the 5th, Lincoln doubled the lead after Smith then hit a sac fly of his own and Moore eventually scored on a wild pitch.
Moore went 3-for-4 with a double and two runs scored – his second consecutive three-hit night – and both Curt Smith and John Sansone had their first multi-hit nights of the year.
The X’s got one run back after three ‘Dogs pitchers walked four hitters in the 7th inning, but Austin Boyle struck out Michael Lang with the bases loaded and two outs to preserve the three-run lead.
Colby Blueberg came on for a save situation in the 9th inning and after the first two X’s reached on a hit-by-pitch and walk, Blueberg shut the door with two strikeouts to earn his first save a year after Lincoln went 35-0 leading after eight innings.
The win snaps Lincoln’s seven-game losing streak in Sioux City dating back to last season.
The ‘Dogs and X’s play the third of a four-game set in Sioux City on Saturday night. RHP Ricky Knapp will make his Saltdogs debut, and first pitch of the game is set for 6:05 p.m. Coverage on ESPN Lincoln 101.5 FM/1480 AM will begin at 5:35.
The Saltdogs open the 2019 home schedule at Haymarket Park on Thursday, May 23rd against the Cleburne Railroaders. For more information on the ‘Dogs, follow the team on Facebook and on Twitter/Instagram @saltdogsball.