The Lancaster JetHawks led a five-run rally in the bottom of the eighth inning to clinch their 11-7 win against the Inland Empire 66ers on Monday afternoon.
The win increased Lancaster’s lead over Rancho Cucamonga to two games in the South Division standings with 18 to play.
Brian Mundell went 2-for-3 with a pair of walks and three RBI. His two-run single brought home the final runs of the decisive eighth inning. Sam Hilliard was 2-for-3 with a home run, two RBI, and three runs scored. Brendan Rodgers, Yonathan Daza, and Wes Rogers also had two hits apiece for the JetHawks. Garrett Hampson walked three times.
Inland Empire (25-27) opened the scoring right away in the first inning on a two-run home run by Jared Walsh. They added two more runs in the second to take a 4-0 lead.
The JetHawks (29-23) tied the game with four runs in the bottom of the second inning. Hilliard and Brendan Rodgers delivered RBI singles.
Inland Empire got solo home runs in the third and fourth innings from Jose Rojas and Taylor Ward. Rojas went 3-for-5 and came a triple shy of the cycle. He finished 10-for-18 in the series.
Hilliard led off the bottom of the sixth inning with his eighth home run of the season to bring the JetHawks within a run. Each team scored once in the seventh.
Hilliard led off the eighth with a walk against Lancaster-native Winston Lavendier. Wes Rogers followed with a single. A wild pitch moved up both runners, before Hamlet Marte came up with an RBI single to tie the game. Mylz Jones was up next and delivered an RBI single of his own to put the JetHawks in front for good.
Carlos Polanco (3-3) tossed a perfect eighth inning out of the Lancaster bullpen to pick up the win. Lavendier (2-2) suffered the loss.
Brendan Rodgers finished 10-for-17 in the series with three home runs and seven runs batted in. His league-leading batting average sits at .390.
The JetHawks have the day off Tuesday before opening a four-game series in Stockton on Wednesday night. Right-hander Peter Lambert (3-4) will start for Lancaster against left-hander Evan Manarino (4-2). First pitch is 7:10 p.m.
The JetHawks are in their first season as a Colorado Rockies affiliate. Full Season, Hawks Packs and Group Tickets are available now at jethawks.com, or by calling (661) 726-5400.