Kirby, Ciola combine for 2-hitter to lead Greyhounds past Aces 5-2

John Kirby and Alex Ciola combined to fire a 2-hitter and the Austin Greyhounds used two runs in the second and three more in the fourth to win their Twin Rivers League matchup with the Owatonna Aces 5-2 Wednesday night at Marcusen Park.

The Hounds pushed two runs across in the bottom of the second courtesy of an RBI single off the bat of Jack Dankert and a sacrifice fly from leadoff hitter Dan Bollingberg.  Austin scored what turned out to be the winning runs in the bottom of the fifth with a sacrifice fly from Dankert, an RBI infield single from Bollingberg and an RBI groundout from then-DH Alex Ciola.  The Aces parlayed three walks and an RBI groundout from Peyton Beyer to plate a single run in the top of the fifth, but Kirby then struck out catcher Tucker Alstad to end the threat.  Owatonna scored another run in the sixth when a walk and an error on Austin put runners at first and third with only one out, and another error on the Hounds pushed the second, and, as it turned out, last run of the game across the plate for the Aces.

The Greyhound offense rapped out 10 hits in the ballgame, with first baseman Miguel Castro going 2 for 4 with a run scored, catcher Eric Torres was 2 for 3 with a pair of doubles, left fielder Angel Santiago was 2 for 4 with two runs scored and a stolen base, Bollingberg wound up going 1 for 4 with two RBI’s and a stolen base,  Alex Ciola was 1 for 4 with a double in the sixth, Dankert was 1 for 3 with a pair of RBI’s and Anthony Ciola, 1 for 2 with a double, a run scored and was twice hit by a pitch.

Kirby was credited with the win on the mound for Austin, as he pitched the first six innings and gave up a run on a hit, striking out five and walking six.  Alex Ciola earned a three-inning save for the Hounds, as he gave up one hit, struck out four and walked two in his three innings of work.

Austin is now 2-2 in Twin Rivers League play, and they are back in action next Wednesday in Winona against the Chiefs, with first pitch scheduled for 7:30 p.m.  The next home game for the Hounds at Marcusen Park will be on Friday, July 10th against the Rochester Roadrunners.