By Mark Schnabel
GARY, Ind. — The Wichita Wingnuts may have let the Gary SouthShore RailCats back in the Central Division race after being swept by Gary in a twinbill Tuesday.
Gary won the first game 7-4 and the second game 4-3 in nine innings. Both games were scheduled for seven innings.
Gary SouthShore improves to 50-37, while Wichita falls to 58-30. Gary moves to within 7 1/2 games of Wichita with 12 games remaining for Wichita and 13 for Gary.
In the first game, Gary scored all seven runs in the top of the second inning. Gary was the visiting team in the game because it was a make-up of a rain out last week in Wichita.
Only two of the runs were earned because of a pair of Wichita errors.
Mike Massaro had an RBI triple in the inning. Nick Liles had a two-run single. Adam Klein, Craig Maddox and Brian Kolb each added an RBI.
Maddox finished the game two for three hitting.
For Wichita, C.J. Ziegler, Brent Clevlen and Jared McDonald each finished two for three hitting. Ziegler had a solo home run. Clevlen also drove in a run. Jake Kahaulelio had a pair of sacrifice flies to drive in two runs.
Wichita's Christopher Smith took the loss, allowing seven runs, two earned, on seven hits with two walks and three strikeouts. Smith went the distance for Wichita.
Chuck Fontana, 2-0, threw two scoreless innings of relief for the win.
In the second game, the Wingnuts scored in the first inning, when Ryan Khoury doubled, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on a Kahaulelio sacrifice fly. The RailCats answered with a Massaro home run.
Gary scored two runs in the third inning on an RBI hit for Cristian Guerrero and an RBI ground out for Christian Vitters.
Ziegler hit a two-run home run in the top of the fifth to tie the game.
With bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the ninth, Ryan Babineau singled to end the game.
Babineau and Massaro each finished two for three for Gary. John Rodriguez went three for four for Wichita. Clevlen was two for four. Khoury was two for five.
Wichita starter Justin Klipp went five innings, allowing three runs on five hits with three walks and five strikeouts. Andrew Aizenstadt took the loss.
Gary starter Stephen Hiscock went seven innings, allowing three runs on nine hits with two walks and five strikeouts. Estevan Uriegas finished the game for the win, allowing no hits and striking out two.
The two teams meet at 7:10 p.m. today in Gary.
Gary SS 070 000 0 —7 7 1
Wichita 111 000 1 —4 10 2
Jernstad, Fontana (W, 2-0) 3, Lindquist 5, Durham 7 and Maddox; Smith (L, 8-4) and Armstrong. HR — W: Ziegler (25). Time — 1:50.
Wichita 100 020 000 —3 9 1
Gary SS 102 000 001 —4 8 0
Klipp, Walters 6, Aizenstadt (L, 1-1) 7 , Holdzkom 9 and Bowden; Hiscock, Uriegas (W, 1-1) and Babineau. HR — GSS: Massaro (2). W: Ziegler (26). Time — 3:03. Attendance — 2,510.