NEW ORLEANS — Mike Bolsinger shut down the New Orleans Zephyrs offense Saturday night as the Reno Aces took the series opener at Zephyr Field, 6-3.
Bolsinger went six innings and held New Orleans to two runs on six hits while striking out 11 batters, including five in a row at one point. He came within one strikeout of tying his career-high of 12, which he set on June 11 of this year in Nashville.
For the second night in a row, the Aces got on the board in the top of the first inning.
After Reno loaded the bases on two singles and a walk, Garrett Weber bounced a ground ball into the hole between shortstop on third base, but Juan Diaz couldn’t handle it, allowing Roger Kieschnick to score from third.
New Orleans took its only lead of the night with two runs in the second inning. Kyle Jensen reached on a fielder’s choice, and Rob Brantly singled to right to put runners on first and third. In the next at-bat, Zack Cox tripled to center field to score both runners and give the Zephyrs a 2-1 lead.
The Aces tied it in the third when Weber plated Danny Dorn on a double to center.
In the fourth inning, Blake Lalli walked to lead off and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. He scored when Nick Ahmed doubled to left field in the next at-bat.
After Roger Kieschnick grounded out, Andy Marte drove home Ahmed with a single to right. The base knock extended his hitting streak to 16 games. Marte scored three batters later when Weber singled to right.
Reno tacked on an insurance run in the sixth inning when Marte hit a solo home run to left field. It was Marte’s 16th long ball of the season, and his second in as many nights.
New Orleans finally answered back in the seventh inning when it capitalized on a leadoff walk to Brian Bogusevic. He advanced to third on a single and walk, and scored on a double play up the middle.
The Zephyrs threatened once again in the eighth inning, loading the bases with no outs against Will Harris, but Harris struck out the next two batters and induced a weak ground ball to get out of the inning unscathed.
Jake Barrett worked a perfect ninth inning to earn his 12th save of the season. He struck out two in the frame, bringing Reno’s team total to 16 in the game, which tied a season-high.
Ahmed recorded his second-straight three-hit night for Reno, and Marte and Weber each finished with two RBIs in the win.
Game two of the series is set for tomorrow at 2 p.m. Reno will send right-hander Charles Brewer (6-9, 5.98) to the hill, and New Orleans will counter with top prospect Andrew Heaney (4-4, 3.99).
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