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MWL: Gonsalves shines in 11-0 shutout over Peoria

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- The Kernels’ offense tallied runs in each of the first six innings and backed up a strong start by Stephen Gonsalves to down Peoria 11-0 on Friday night. Gonsalves picked up his second winning start on the year with seven scoreless frames on the evening where he allowed just three hits. On a night where each man in the Cedar Rapids batting order collected a base-hit, the Kernels’ offense totaled 14 of them, seven for extra-bases.

Jonatan Hinojosa tallied a double and a triple in the winning effort to total four RBIs on the night. Jared Wilson and Dallas Gallant each tossed a scoreless, hitless inning out of the bullpen and combined to keep the Chiefs off the scoreboard.

The Kernels’ offense struck early with one run in the bottom of the first. Engelb Vielma hustled out an infield single with one down and later scored on an Alex Swim two-out RBI single to right field to make it a 1-0 game. On the same play, Mitch Garver, who doubled in the at-bat prior to Swim, was thrown out at the plate from right to end the inning.

In the second frame, Jonatan Hinojosa made it a 3-0 lead by driving in a pair with a double into left-center field. J.D. Williams and Ryan Walker scored on the drive, but Hinojosa was thrown out sliding into third to end the frame trying to stretch out a triple.

Blake McKnight (5-10) took an early exit for Peoria after 3 1/3 innings of eight-run baseball on the mound. McKnight yielded 12 hits, one strikeout and no walks to the Kernels’ hitters in the losing effort.

Robert Stock took over with men on the bases in the middle of the fourth, and the reliever sent down the first two men he faced to escape the inning. Stock finished after 1 2/3 innings out of the bullpen where he allowed one run on no hits and walked a pair.

Cedar Rapids widened the gap with a four-run fourth that featured four extra-base hits. Williams opened the frame with a triple to the wall in right-center and scored on Tanner Vavra’s RBI single up the middle during the next at-bat. Ryan Walker then knocked a ground-rule double over the wall in right, advancing Vavra to third.

Next, Hinojosa drove in Walker and Vavra on a fly ball to left that dropped for a triple. Vaughn Bryan lost the ball in the lights on the play, and it allowed Hinojosa to head into third for his second extra-base hit of the night. Chad Christensen continued the fourth with an RBI double down the left field line. The double-bagger allowed Hinojosa to trot across the plate to make it an 8-0 advantage.

Ryan Walker made it a 9-0 lead over the Chiefs in the fifth when he drove in Max Murphy on a sacrifice fly to left field for the inning’s first out.

The Chiefs sent Steven Sabatino to the hill to open the sixth, and the reliever surrendered two runs on two hits in one inning of work.

The Kernels tallied two more in the sixth to make it an 11-0 total. Chad Christensen singled early in the inning to tally his third hit of the evening. Next, Alex Swim reached on an infield error at shortstop. Max Murphy then doubled in Christensen to deep center field to make it a ten-run deficit. Vavra drove in Swim two batters later on a run-scoring ground out to mark the final run for Cedar Rapids in the game.

Stephen Gonsalves (2-2) completed his evening after seven strong frames on the mound where he allowed just three hits and zero runs. Gonsalves struck out five and walked none en route to his second winning start of the season.

Richy Pedroza, a position player for Peoria, entered on the mound in the seventh and finished the final two innings defensively for the Chiefs. Pedroza struck out four batters and allowed no hits as the only Peoria arm to keep the Kernels off the scoreboard in the contest.

Jared Wilson toed the rubber in the eighth for the Kernels and gave up no runs and no hits in his lone inning of work.

Dallas Gallant closed the ninth for Cedar Rapids and preserved the 11-0 lead to secure the victory. Gallant walked a pair and recorded one strikeout in his 17th appearance on the year.
The Kernels will continue the home stand for game two against Peoria on Saturday evening at 6:45 p.m. Enjoy a spectacular FIREWORKS show, presented by Cargill and Special Olympics, following the Kernels game!
LHP Lewis Thorpe is scheduled to take the mound in game two for Cedar Rapids while Peoria is expected to counter with RHP Arturo Reyes.

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