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Mark Payton (Photo by Martin Griff)

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Thunder Win One for the Dogs

TRENTON, NJ – On Bat Dog Celebration night, Billy Fleming’s RBI groundout in the bottom of the sixth inning took a 7-6 lead and the Thunder’s bullpen held the line to take the opener of the series against the Fisher Cats on Monday night at ARM & HAMMER Park.

New Hampshire held a 2-0 lead after the top of the first inning, before the Thunder offense took their swings against Shane Dawson. The Thunder tagged Dawson for a run in the bottom of the first and knocked him from the game with five runs in the bottom of the second. Each of the runs in the second crossed with two out as Mark Payton, Tyler Austin, Lane Adams and Kyle Higashioka each drove in runs with two-out hits.

The visitors rallied back to make it 6-5 after the top of the fourth. Cale Coshow struggled with his command throughout his outing, tying a career-high with five walks. He did manage to leave the game with a lead before Matt Tracy surrendered a run in the top of the sixth inning.

The Thunder would rally back in the bottom of the inning with a lead-off single from Lane Adams and back-to-back walks from Adams and Higashioka. Billy Fleming stepped to the plate and hit a slow chopper toward short on the first pitch to score a run and take the 7-6 lead.

Tracy worked around a walk to begin the seventh inning and Alex Smith followed him with a six-out save to close down the victory. Smith struck out four on his way to his second save of the season.

The Thunder had every batter reach base, except for Dustin Fowler, after two innings of play. Tyler Austin reached in all five of his plate appearances by walking three times, singling twice and scoring two runs. The Thunder also drew a season-high nine walks at the plate. Payton and Higashioka recorded multi-RBI games as well.

Your Thunder will play game two of their season against the Fisher Cats on Tuesday night at 7pm. LHP Daniel Camarena will start for the Thunder, LHP John Anderson will go for New Hampshire. It’s super value Tuesday at ARM & HAMMER Park with kids eat free and $1 hot dogs presented by Black Bear Franks. Tickets are available by phone at 609-394-3300 or online at TrentonThunder.com.

This post is a press release courtesy of the Trenton Thunder Media Relations Department.

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