LANCASTER, Calif. - The JetHawks used home runs to come-from-behind to tie the game on twice but eventually fell to the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, 11-7, on Sunday afternoon at The Hangar.
With the loss and an Inland Empire victory over San Jose, Lancaster dropped a game and a half out of first place, the team's biggest deficit in the standings this season.
The Quakes scored four unearned runs in the ninth inning to break a 7-7 tie against closer Travis Ballew (1-1). With two on and two out, Matt Duffy committed an error that allowed the tie-breaking run to score from second base. Angelo Songco later singled in two runs cap the scoring.
Lancaster tied the game in the bottom of the sixth after Chris Devenski had allowed four runs in the top half of the inning.
Matt Duffy led off with a solo home run to claim the top spot on the club with seven homers. Two batters later, Tyler Heineman hit his first home run of the season.
After Chris Epps walked to extend the inning, Delino DeShields blasted a ball off the batter's eye in centerfield to tie the game. It was also DeShields' first bomb of the season.
Rancho Cucamonga had jumped out to an early three-run lead after scoring three runs off starter Brady Rodgers in the third inning. Scott Wingo hit an RBI-triple and Ryan Mount and Noel Cuevas each added RBIs.
DeShields picked up Lancaster's first run of the game in with an RBI-single in the third inning.
Telvin Nash hit a two-run shot, his sixth of the year, off Quakes starter Jarret Martin to tie the game in the fifth. Martin allowed three runs over five innings and walked a season-high six batters.
The JetHawks were plagued by numerous mistakes on the bases. DeShields was doubled-up on a soft line drive off the bat of Joe Sclafani in the third inning. Two runners were caught stealing on broken plays in the fourth inning
Lancaster also left the bases loaded twice, including in the seventh inning when they had the bags full with one out and failed to score a run. They left 10 runners on base in the game and hit 3-for-12 with runners in scoring position.
The JetHawks (24-19) take on the Quakes (22-21) in game two of the series on Monday evening at 7:00 pm. Tyson Perez (1-2, 6.62) will pitch against Rancho Cucamonga's Duke von Schamann (5-1, 3.67).
Fans who bring a new or gently use children's book to donate will receive free admission for Make-a-Difference Monday.
Don't miss a moment of the 2013 season as the JetHawks look to repeat as California League Champions. Season tickets and great ticket packages are available now. To order, call (661) 726-5400 or visit jethawks.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.