Hamilton Thunderbirds won their first game of the Intercounty Baseball League season on Sunday, 12-9, over the Kitchener Panthers, but they needed 10 innings to do.
A three-run homer in the ninth inning by Adam Strongman (his second of the game), and another three-run homer in the 10th inning by Geoff Allen (also his second of the day), were too much for the Panthers to handle.
Kitchener had an 8-6 lead heading into the ninth inning.
Panthers’ Jeff Pietraszko homered to tie the game 9-9 and forced extra innings. Kirt Zimniewicz and Terrell Allamon batted in three runs each. Allamon hit a three-run home run in the first inning.
For Hamilton, Ian Kowalchuk and Tom Robertson also homered for Hamilton.
Starter Nibaldo Acosta went five innings for the Thunderbirds, giving up five runs (one earned) on eight hits. Jesus Chourio (fourth Hamilton pitcher of the game) earned the victory with three innings of nearly perfect relief. The Pietraszko home run was the only hit he gave up. He had five strikeouts.
Cody Cassagrande took the loss for the Panthers. Joel Scott started the game, and went five innings, giving up four runs on four hits.