SIOUX CITY, Iowa — Bryan Pounds hit three home runs against his former club to lead the Sioux City Explorers (7-7) over Dennis Raben and the Saltdogs (7-7) 6-4 in front of 2,251 fans at Lewis and Clark Park.
Pounds went opposite field in the fourth to tie the game at 2-2, gave the X's the lead on a towering two-run shot in the sixth, and extended Sioux City's advantage with a solo blast in the eighth.
Raben hit two long balls for the Saltdogs, and now has a league-high seven on the campaign. David Espinosa launched a homer as well, his third in the last four games.
Dan Jurik (1-1) pitched six innings, allowing two runs on six hits while striking out six and walking zero to earn the victory. Ben Henry (0-2) gave up four earned in seven innings to suffer the loss.
The Saltdogs could not capitalize in the first inning after getting runners on the corners with no outs, nor in the third with two men on and one out.
Raben finished the night 2-for-4 with two home runs and three RBI. Espinosa went 2-for-4 with two runs and a home run. Daniel Carroll finished 2-for-4 and extended his hit streak to 10 games with a first-inning double.
The clubs meet Saturday night at 7:05 p.m. for game two of the three-game series. Matt Bywater (1-1, 6.75) will square off against Richard Salazar (0-0, 0.00). Radio coverage begins at 6:35 p.m. on KFOR 1240.
The Saltdogs return home June 7 to take on the Explorers. For ticket information, please visit www.saltdogs.com.