Sauget, Ill. — The Traverse City Beach Bums broke a 2-2 tie with three runs in the top of the sixth, then added three more for good measure in the seventh in an 8-4 win over Gateway Sunday in the final game of a three-game set.
Chase Burch scored the go-ahead run when Grizzlies shortstop Vladimir Frias committed an error on a ball hit by Traverse City’s Sean Gusrang. Chris Cowell drove in the other two runs in the inning on a two-out single that plated Gusrang and Zach Kometani to put the Beach Bums ahead 5-2.
Gateway (9-5) got one run back in the bottom of the sixth, but Traverse City pushed three more across the plate to give it a five-run cushion. Burch was at the center of that action as he clubbed a two-run double. Taylor Wrenn brought in the first run of the inning one batter early with a double that chased Gateway starter Tim Brown from the game. Brown allowed eight runs, five earned, gave up nine hits, walked two and fanned five over six innings.
Jacob Clem evened his record at 2-2 with seven innings of solid work on the mound. Clem allowed three runs on nine hits and struck out three. Chris Squires came on in relief and pitched two innings. He allowed two hits and one run in the ninth inning, while striking out three.
Wrenn, Burch and Cowell had two hits each to lead Traverse City (8-7) and combined to drive in five runs. Gusrang belted his first home run of the season and drove in two runs. That long ball put the Beach Bums ahead 2-0 in the second. Gateway came back and tied it in the fifth on back-to-back home runs by Michael Pair and Jonathan Johnson. Antone DeJesus and Johnson led the Gateway offense with three hits each.
LATE SATURDAY: Gateway scored three runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to sneak past Traverse City 5-3.
Traverse City had taken a 3-2 lead in the top of the seventh when Burch ripped a two-run homer. The Beach Bums carried that lead into the eighth when, with two outs, Jon Myers singled to left to score Jose Flores and tie the game. Frias then blasted a two-run homer for a 5-3 lead.
Matt Miller took the loss for Traverse City, coming on for Nick Capito during the eighth. Michael Devine started for Traverse City and went five innings, allowing two runs on five hits. Burny Mitchem was the first to come out of the bullpen, giving up only one hit in 1.1 innings.
Marcus Nidiffer and Kometani had two hits each for Traverse City.
Traverse City returns home on Tuesday for a stretch of six straight home games when they welcome the Lake Erie Crushers and the Frontier Greys to Wuerfel Park.