The Southern Illinois Miners scored four times in their final two turns at-bat, but were stifled offensively in the early part of the game, suffering a 9-4 loss to the Evansville Otters at Bosse Field.
Evansville jumped on Southern Illinois starter Chase Cunningham (0-1) early in the game, as after the first two batters reached base in the first inning, Ryan Long hit a three-run home run to make it 3-0 Otters. A solo shot by Jack Meggs in the second inning then increased the deficit to 4-0. Cunningham would rebound to hold the Otters off the board in the third and fourth innings, but a wild pitch and a two-out RBI single by Carlos Castro pushed the margin out to 6-0 and chased him from the game in the bottom of the fifth.
The Miners were held to no hits and four walks offensively through the first seven frames by Evansville starter Patrick McGuff (1-0) and reliever Matt Rowland, with McGuff striking out 12 in the game. Down 8-0 in the top of the eighth, they got on the board when Gianfranco Wawoe led off with a walk that preceded a two-run home run by Kyle Davis, breaking up the no-hitter and the shutout in one motion.
The Otters would get a run back against Chase Adkins, who came in for Cunningham in the fifth inning and proceeded to finish the game, in the bottom of the eighth to make it 9-2, but Southern Illinois chipped away further at their deficit in the ninth inning. Chris Iriart was hit by a pitch leading off, and Alex Santana pulled an RBI double down the third base line to score him and make it 9-3, then went to third on a throwing error and scored himself on a groundout by Arturo Nieto. The Miners got no closer, however, in losing their first season opener since 2014 and eighth straight game overall at Bosse Field.
Southern Illinois will seek their first victory of 2019 and look to bounce back in the second game of the series on Saturday, May 11 at 6:35 p.m. Austin Dubsky will toe the rubber for the Miners against Evansville's Randy Wynne.
The Southern Illinois Miners are the Frontier League's most-successful franchise since debuting in 2007, winning the 2012 Frontier League Championship as well as division titles in 2010, 2014, 2015 and 2016. They have been awarded the Frontier League Organization of the Year award three times since their inception, and also set a new Frontier League attendance record in their inaugural season. For ticket information, contact the box office at (618) 998-8499. For additional information, visit our website at www.southernillinoisminers.com.