SIOUX CITY, Iowa — Despite several clutch hits and a huge night from Asif Shah, the Sioux City Explorers edged the Saldogs 9-8 in the series opener at Lewis and Clark Park Monday night.
Sioux City overcame three different deficits, the last of which occurred in the bottom of the eighth. After Lincoln retook the lead with a three-run rally in the top-half of the inning, the Explorers responded with an RBI triple by Michael Lang, who then scored the go-ahead run on a balk.
The Explorers erased early leads of 2-0 and 5-2 before staging their final comeback.
Eddie Delacruz (1-0) pitched two innings in relief, allowing one earned run on two hits to pick up the win. David Slovak (0-1) allowed two runs on two hits in two innings to suffer the loss. Chris Bodishbaugh worked a perfect ninth to earn his second save.
Lincoln drove in four runs with two-outs in the losing effort. Shah finished 4-for-5 with two doubles, three runs and an RBI. Leivi Ventura booked his fourth multi-hit game of the season.
Kris Sanchez and reigning American Association hitter of the week Ryan Priddy each homered for the Explorers.
Justin Edwards started for the Saltdogs, going 4 2/3 innings, allowing five runs on seven hits while striking out six.
The teams meet again for game two of the four-game series Tuesday night at 7:05 p.m. Jino Gonzalez (0-1, 12.27) will take the mound against Nick Schumacher (1-0, 2.57). Radio coverage begins at 6:35 p.m. on KFOR 1240.
The Saltdogs’ home opener at Haymarket Park is May 23 against Sioux City. Get your Saltdogs Five Pack (five behind-the-plate tickets for just $50!) now by calling 402-474-BALL or by visiting www.saltdogs.com.