Great Falls, MT-The Voyagers used a 10-run bottom of the third to erase an early three-run deficit in a 14-3 series-clinching victory over Billings Sunday afternoon at Centene Stadium.
Great Falls (34-37, 12-21) goes for the series sweep Monday, and has a 7-5 lead in the season series with the Mustangs. The Voyagers improved to 22-14 at home this season. Billings (36-36, 21-13) dropped to 16-21 on the road. With a Helena win over Missoula Sunday, first-place Billings is now just two games up on the Brewers with four to play in the second-half.
Billings opened the scoring with three runs in the top of the first on only one base hit. The Voyagers committed three throwing errors on ground balls to benefit the Mustangs. The lone base hit in the frame was by Mariel Bautista to extend his league-best hitting streak to 23 games. All three runs in the inning were unearned.
The Voyagers then blasted off to seize control with a 10-run bottom of the third. Adam McGinnis and Micah Coffey both walked to start it. Romy Gonzalez attempted a sacrifice bunt, but the pitcher threw high to third after fielding the ball. Lenyn Sosa brought the first run home on a base hit up the right field line. Bryce Bush leveled the game at 3-3 with a two-run single lined into left. The inning also featured a three-run home run high and deep to left by Amado Nunez for his sixth of the season and a 7-3 lead. Coffey recorded a two-run single as well and Sosa finished the scoring in the third with a sacrifice fly to right.
Great Falls put up three more tallies in the fourth. It included a leadoff solo home run high up the right field side by Logan Sowers for his ninth of the season. The Voyagers added another run in the sixth with a Ryan Fitzpatrick leadoff solo home run deep to left for his sixth.
The Voyagers pitching staff held the Mustangs to just four base hits. Billings has only six hits now in the first two games of the series. Vince Arobio posted the win in relief. Arobio (3-6) worked two-and-two-thirds scoreless and gave up just two hits with three strikeouts and no walks. Luis Alecis took the loss in his start for the Mustangs. Alecis lasted just two innings and surrendered six runs (four earned) on three hits with one strikeout and two walks.
Great Falls outhit Billings 12-to-4. Amado Nunez went 2-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored. Micah Coffey was 3-for-3 with two walks, three RBIs, and a run. Bryce Bush had two hits with two RBIs.
Great Falls closes out the regular-season home slate with game three against Billings Monday night. First pitch is scheduled for 7 o'clock. Gates open at 6 p.m. for Fan Appreciation Night. For 2018 playoff tickets and promotional information, call 406-452-5311 or visit www.gfvoyagers.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.