SOUTH BEND, Ind. — South Bend proved why games are decided on the field and not on paper Monday as the Midwest League leading Clinton LumberKings dropped a 7-1 decision to the last place Silver Hawks as South Bend pitching limited Clinton to three hits.

The LumberKings hold the best record in the Midwest League, while the Silver Hawks have the worst.

Each team went three-up-three-down in the first inning.

The L-Kings did so again in the top half of the first second inning, but South Bend took a 2-0 lead in bottom of the second when the Silver Hawks scored two runs with two outs.

South Bend’s Ramon Ramirez singled, then Aaron Hanke homered to left, driving in two.

Clinton’s Jose Felix walked to open the third, but the LumberKings failed to capitalize.

Matthew Lawson doubled to open the fourth, but once again the LumberKings could not get a rally going as the next three batters went down in order.

The Silver Hawks added two more runs in the bottom of the fourth as Michael Mee doubled and Sean Coughlin homered to give South Bend a 4-0 lead.

The teams went scoreless over the fifth and sixth innings.

Clinton got on the scoreboard in the seventh.

Timothy Smith singled and Mitchell Moreland doubled to give the LumberKings runners on second and third.

The next batter, Jonathan Greene, flied out to center field, but it was long enough to score Smith from third on the sacrifice.

Clinton replaced starter Blake Beaven (L, 1-1) with Hector Nelo in the bottom of the seventh.

Nelo gave up three hits and three runs in the inning as South Bend ran their lead to 7-1.

In the eighth inning, the Silver Hawks replaced starter Christian Beltre (W, 2-2) with reliever Bryan Henry. Henry gave South Bend two innings of no-hit ball to close out the game.

With the loss the L-Kings fall to 20-7, but still lead the Midwest League.

South Bend improved it’s record to 10-19 with the win.

Clinton will battle South Bend today and Wednesday, before returning home on Thursday to welcome Peoria and their manager, Ryne Sandberg, to Alliant Energy field for a four game series.

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