With two out in the ninth inning, Josh Banuelos hit what looked to be a game-tying 3-run homer to right field, but Sam Hilliard made a leaping catch at the wall, stealing the home run, and giving the Rockies an 8-5 win over the Idaho Falls Chukars Monday night at Suplizio Field.
Idaho Falls trailed by five entering the ninth, but managed four hits off Rockies pitcher Daniel Koger, two coming with two out, and it came after Koger struck out Amalani Fukofuka with the bases loaded in the 8th inning, when the Rockies were holding a 5-3 lead.
After the Fukofuka strikeout, Elvin Paulino doubled home Chris Rabago, Bobby Stahel plated Tyler Nevin with a sacrifice fly, and Daniel Suero singled in Paulino to give the Rockies their largest lead of the night.
Ryan Stephens gave the Rockies a 1-0 lead when he doubled home Jonathan Piron in the bottom of the first, but the Chukars tied the game with an unearned run in the second.
The game stayed 1-1 until the fifth when Piron hit a 3-run homer. Later in the inning, Stephens went deep for the fourth time to give the Rockies a 5-1 lead.
Idaho Falls tallied runs in the 7th and 8th innings, but they finished the game 4-for-21 with runners in scoring position, leaving 16 men on base.
Grand Junction gets to 8-4 on the year after taking 3-of-4 from the Chukars in their 4-game series. The Rockies are tied for first place with Orem in the South Division as they head to Brent Brown Ballpark to open a 4-game series with the Owlz on Tuesday night.