RANCHO CUCAMONGA – The Rancho Cucamonga Quakes rallied for four runs over the final two frames to come back and defeat the JetHawks, 5-4, in the series’ rubber game on Thursday night at LoanMart Field.
Ryan Rolison (pictured above) allowed only one run over five innings in one of his best starts this season, but the bullpen and defense couldn’t hold on to the lead. Jeren Kendall scored the winning run when LeeMarcus Boyd dropped a throw from catcher Austin Bernard at second base on a double steal attempt with two outs in the ninth.
Tommy Doyle (1-2) was charged with just his second blown save this season in 20 opportunities. Brayan Morales led off the ninth with a broken-bat infield hit and then moved to third on Kendall’s broken-bat flare that dropped in shallow left field.
Morales scored to tie the game on a Ryan Vilade fielding error. With runners at first and third and one out, Miguel Vargas pulled a ground ball that Vilade knocked down but did not field cleanly. The third baseman was unable to get any out on the play, and Kendall, who had stolen second base, took third.
With a 1-2 count on the next batter, Marcus Chiu, Vargas took off on a delay from first base. Bernard threw to second, but his throw kicked off Boyd’s glove and rolled to left field allowing Kendall to score the winning run.
The win gave the Quakes (25-22, 66-49) the series win and moved them back into a first-place tie with the JetHawks (25-22, 59-56) in the second-half South Division standings. The JetHawks, who do not play the Quakes again in the regular season, won the season series, 17-11.
Rancho had taken an early lead on a Kendall RBI-triple in the third inning, but Casey Golden quickly answered with a solo home run off Quakes starter John Rooney in the fourth. The homer was his 19th of the season to lead the active roster.
The JetHawks rallied for three runs in the fifth to take the lead. Matt Hearn walked and stole second base, his second of two steals in the game, before scoring when Brandon Montgomery dropped a fly ball in left. Taylor Snyder followed with a sac-fly and Rooney was removed from the game.
Golden, Morgan and McLaughlin greeted reliever Sven Schueller with three straight singles, the last of which scored Golden from second base to put Lancaster ahead, 4-1.
The Quakes scored two in the eighth inning against Nick Kennedy to get within a run before coming back to win in the ninth.
Here’s the box score.
The JetHawks return home to host the Visalia Rawhide in the first game of a three-game series on Friday at 6:35 p.m. Lefty Colten Schmidt will start for Lancaster against Justin Lewis.
JetHawks single-game tickets, group tickets, ticket packages and season tickets are on sale now. Visit jethawks.com or call 661-726-5400 for more information.