The Bears Drop the Final Game of the Series to the Thunder at The Mon 

RECAP 8-13

GRANVILLE, W.Va. - The Trenton Thunder defeated the West Virginia Black Bears, 11-10, on Sunday afternoon at Monongalia County Ballpark. Despite out-hitting Trenton, West Virginia was unable to overcome the deficit after trailing most of the game. With the loss, the Bears remain in first place, 6.5 games ahead in the MLB Draft League standings with a 36-20 overall record. 

The Thunder took the earliest lead possible as Kolby Johnson hit a lead-off homerun in the top of the first. Angel Mendoza got an RBI double that scored Joe Impeduglia from first base before Anthony Fontana brought in Mendoza to put the Thunder up 3-0.

Trenton built upon their lead in the top of the second inning. Throwing errors by Bears’ catcher Tyler Dellerman and center fielder Cam Ridley allowed Dan Covino to score after stealing second base. AJ Stinson replaced Bears’ starter Brooks Garrett with two outs in the second. In 2.2 innings pitched, Garrett gave up three earned runs, striking out one. 

West Virginia finally got in the game in the bottom of the inning. A two-RBI triple from Ridley drove in both Anthony Hansen and Tyner Hughes to cut the Thunder lead to two.

The Black Bears continued to claw into the deficit in the third frame. Bobby Lada plated Noah Lucier on a single hit back to the pitcher to make the score 4-3.

John Bakke replaced Stinson to start the fifth. In 2.1 innings pitched, Stinson held the Thunder hitless and scoreless. Bakke quickly retired the side to send the Bears back to the plate. 

With the bases loaded in the home half of the inning, Trenton’s starter Luke Rettig struck Dellerman with a pitch to score Manny Vorhees. Heading into the sixth, the Bears had their eyes set on a comeback with the game tied at four. 

Sacrifice flies drove in two more for the Thunder for a two-run lead in the sixth inning. Ramon Jimenez and Impeduglia brought in two runs on back-to-back fly outs to put Trenton ahead 6-4.

Continuing the back-and-forth scoring, West Virginia recovered the runs over the next two innings. Patrick Lee plated Ridley in the bottom of the sixth to bring the Bears within one. Then the Black Bears knotted the game for the second time the following inning as Hansen drove in Lada for the sixth run of the game. 

Trenton pulled away with five more scored in the eighth. A two-RBI double from Impeduglia put the Thunder up 8-6. Fontana was later hit by a pitch, driving in Jimenez for a three-run lead. After giving up three runs, Jim Jarecki was replaced by Jarrett Miller. The Thunder managed to score two more to increase their lead to 11-6.

In the bottom of the eighth, a Michael Cooper single drove in Hughes to cut the Thunder’s lead down to four. Vorhees brought in two more runs on a single to right field before Cooper scored on a bases-loaded walk. Heading into the ninth, West Virginia trailed by one. 

Though the Bears managed to get two runners in scoring position, they ended the game with a fly out near third base for their first loss of the series. 

Sunday’s game was marked by several pitching changes for both teams with five Black Bears pitchers making an appearance. Manny Vorhees and Cam Ridley led the Bears’ offense with two RBI each, as Ridley had a solid bounce back game after a hitting slump. Ridley picked up one run on two hits, and Vorhees recorded one run and one hit. 

West Virginia hits the road on Tuesday for three games at Eastwood Field against the Mahoning Valley Scrappers before making the trip to Trenton for another three-game series. The Black Bears are back home on August 22 for yet another matchup against the Thunder in the final home stand of the season.