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Sounds Hold Off Cubs to Open Second Half

The Nashville Sounds held off a furious rally by the Iowa Cubs to open the unofficial second half of the season with an 8-7 win at Principal Park.

After racing out to a 5-0 lead and holding an 8-2 advantage in the top of the eighth, the Sounds allowed five doubles in the final two innings as the Cubs scored five runs to make it close.

Bruce Maxwell started the scoring with an RBI single in the top of the second inning. Nashville added four runs in the third as Franklin Barreto, Anthony Garcia, Sheldon Neuse and Jorge Mateo had hits.

The 5-0 lead looked like it would be more than enough support for starter Eric Jokisch. The southpaw went 6 1/3 innings and limited the Cubs to two runs on five hits. He walked a pair and struck out six in his third win of the season.

After Iowa got on the board with two runs in the fourth, Garcia padded Nashville’s lead with his team-high 15th home run of the season, a two-run line drive out to left-center in the sixth.

Ramon Laureano’s RBI double extended his hitting streak to 10 games and gave Nashville an 8-2 lead in the eighth inning. Iowa staged a rally against Liam Hendriks in the bottom half of the inning. Chris Coghlan and Chesny Young had singles, and Taylor Davis and Jason Vosler added doubles to trim Nashville’s lead to 8-5.

J.B. Wendelken relieved Hendriks and promptly allowed back-to-back doubles to Ryan Court and Bijan Rademacher but got out of the inning by stranding the tying run at second.

In the ninth, Iowa’s Mark Zagunis kept the game alive with a two-out double to left field. Wendelken then walked Davis but hung on to the 8-7 lead by striking out Vosler with the tying run in scoring position.

Wendelken notched his third save of the season despite being charged with a run on three hits. Garcia, Neuse, Maxwell and Mateo all had multi-hit games for Nashville.

The Sounds and Cubs play a day-night doubleheader Friday at Principal Park. Left-hander Dean Kiekhefer (5-0, 4.43) starts for Nashville in game one against right-hander Casey Coleman (1-0, 1.50). First pitch of game one is scheduled for 1:08 p.m. Game two is scheduled for a 7:08 p.m. start.

Post-Game Notes

  • With tonight’s 8-7 win, the Sounds improved to 43-45 on the season.
  • Right fielder Ramon Laureano extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a double in the eighth inning.
  • Left fielder Anthony Garcia matched a season-high with three runs scored and hit his team-leading 15th home run of the year.
  • Starter Eric Jokisch notched his fifth quality start of the season (6.1 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 R, 2 BB, 6 K).

The 2018 season is the Sounds’ 41st in franchise history and fourth as the Oakland Athletics’ top affiliate. Single-game tickets are available now by calling (615) 690-4487 or by visiting www.nashvillesounds.com.