Herald Staff Report

PEORIA, Ill. — One night after seeing Peoria beat them with a late rally, the Clinton LumberKings enjoyed a late surge to win in Midwest League baseball.

Clinton broke open a tie game with three runs in the sixth inning Thursday night, added three more runs over the final three innings and went on to beat Peoria 8-3 at O’Brien Stadium.

Jacob Shaffer went 3-for-5 — all doubles — and scored three runs, and Travis Howell drove in three runs for the LumberKings, who moved back into a tie with the Chiefs for third place in the Western Division.

Howell also got things rolling in the three-run sixth that gave Clinton a 5-2 lead.

He led off the inning with a walk against Peoria starter Marcus Hatley (3-3) and moved to second base on a single by Nate Tenbrink, who also finished with three hits. Ogui Diaz followed with a bunt single, and when Hatley made a wild throw on the play, Howell scored the go-ahead run, Tenbrink took third and Diaz advanced to second.

Tenbrink scored and Diaz went to third on Maximo Mendez’s sacrifice fly to right field, then Diaz scored when Luis Nunez grounded out.

Clinton added another run in the seventh on Howell’s sacrifice fly that scored Scott Savastano, who had doubled with one out.

Clinton pitchers Greg Moviel and Stephen Penney worked out of an eighth-inning jam with Peoria able to score just one run, then the LumberKings added a pair of runs in the ninth on Howell’s two-run double. It was Clinton’s sixth double in the game.

Doubles also figured into the scoring of Clinton’s first two runs. Shaffer led off the game with a double and scored on a two-out double by Kris Sanchez. In the third, Shaffer again led off with a double. A bunt single by Denny Almonte moved Shaffer to third, and he scored when Savastano hit into a double play.

The LumberKings open a three-game series tonight with a 6:30 game at South Bend.

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