Waterloo Bucks Drop Series Opener At Thunder Bay
Robert Neustrom's career night at the plate couldn't help the Waterloo Bucks in an 11-7 setback at Thunder Bay Tuesday night (July 26, 2016).
Neustrom (Iowa) drove in six of the Bucks' seven runs, hitting a grand slam home run and a two-run double while going 2-for-4 at the plate. He also scored a pair of runs in the loss.
Waterloo (7-11, 29-24) never led on the night, despite having at least one runner reach base in eight of the nine innings. Thunder Bay took control of the game early, building an 8-0 lead after four innings.
Four-straight singles resulted in a pair of first-inning runs for the Border Cats. They added two more in the third and four more in the fourth on Shane Shepard's grand slam home run.
Neustrom cut Thunder Bay's lead in half with one swing of the bat in the fifth inning. The Bucks' right fielder hit a grand slam, narrowing the deficit to 8-4. The grand slam was Waterloo's third of the season and Neustrom's fourth home run of the year.
Thunder Bay (7-10, 13-38) extended its lead to 10-4 with a two-run sixth inning before Waterloo plated three in the seventh. Neustrom increased his RBI total to six with a two-run double to right-center field. Then, Zach Fricke's pinch-hit RBI groundout to the left side trimmed the Border Cats' advantage to 10-7.
Joe Gellenbeck gave Thunder Bay an insurance run in the bottom of the seventh when he connected for his fourth home run of the season, a solo shot over the right field wall.
Waterloo starter Bryce Reichmann (2-1) was tagged with the loss in his third start of the year. He allowed a season-high eight runs (all earned) on 12 hits, striking out three and walking two over five innings.
UP NEXT: The Bucks and Border Cats complete their two-game series at Thunder Bay's Port Arthur Stadium on Wednesday (July 27).
Story Contributor: Jared Schlensky - Waterloo Bucks