O'FALLON, Mo. - A ninth-inning error allowed the O'Fallon, Mo., Hoots to score the winning run in a two-run bottom of the ninth to give them a 4-3 Prospect League baseball win over the Alton River Dragons in the first game of a home-and-home series Friday night at CarShield Field in O'Fallon.

The River Dragons got solo home runs from Nick Niebauer and Brady Mutz in the game, while starting pitcher Alex Redman struck out seven batters in his time on the mound.

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Alton broke out on top with a single run in the third to take a 1-0 lead, then extended it with two runs in the top of the sixth to go up 3-0. The Hoots got single runs in the bottom of the sixth and seventh innings to pull to within 3-2, then scored twice in the bottom of the ninth to take the 4-3 win.

Mutz had two hits, including his two-run homer in the sixth that scored Niebauer ahead of him, and two RBIs, while Niebauer's solo shot in the third was his only hit and RBI. Boston Merila and Alec Nigut had the only other hits for the River Dragons.

Redman was the starting pitcher for the Dragons, and he went five-and-two-thirds innings, allowing one run on four hits while striking out seven, with Jack McNeil pitching an inning-and-a-third, giving up a run on two hits while walking one, and Tyler Bell threw an inning-and-two-thirds and allowed two runs on three hits while fanning two.

Alton is now 19-24 on the season, and host the Hoots in the second game of the home-and-home series Saturday night at Lloyd Hopkins Field at Gordon Moore Park in a 6:35 p.m. first pitch. The River Dragons then go back on the road to play the Cape Catfish in Cape Girardeau, Mo. Sunday night at 7:05 p.m., then enjoy their regular Monday night off. Alton starts off the next week with a Tuesday home game against the Normal CornBelters at 6:35 p.m., then play at the Quincy Gems in a doubleheader on Wednesday, with the first game being the completion of a suspended game at 5 p.m at Quincy University Stadium, followed by the regularly scheduled game at 6:35 p.m. The Springfield Sliders come calling to Lloyd Hopkins Field on Thursday at 6:35 p.m., with the Dragons and Hoots playing each other again at Alton in another 6:35 p.m. start. Alton then plays next weekend on the road, at Quincy Saturday night and O'Fallon Sunday night, with both games starting at 6:35 p.m.

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River Dragons Score Four Runs In The Fifth, Stilts Allows Only Two Runs On 11 Hits In 7-2 Win At Cape, Split Home-And-Home Series

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. - Former Alton High pitcher Adam Stilts allowed two runs on 11 hits in six-and-two-thirds innings, while the Alton River Dragons broke the game open with four runs in the fifth inning to take a 7-2 win over the Cape Catfish of Cape Girardeau, Mo. in a Prospect League game played Thursday evening at Capaha Field In Cape Girardeau.

The win gave Alton a split in a home-and-home series against the Catfish, with Cape having won the previous night at Lloyd Hopkins Field 7-1.

The Catfish opened the scoring with one run in the second, with the River Dragons scoring twice in the top of the fourth, but Cape scored another single run in the bottom of the inning to tie the game 2-2. Alton then had its four-run fifth inning to take the lead for good, then added on another run in the eighth to take the 7-2 win and the split.

Josh Johnson, who has been on a roll as of late at bat, led the way for Alton with two hits and two RBIs on the night, with David Harris having a hit and RBI, Brady Mutz, Zach Carden and Troy Johnson also had hits for on the night and both Bryce Zupan of Civic Memorial and Andrew Nigut both drove home runs.

Stilts was the starting pitcher for the River Dragons, and gave up the two runs on 11 hits, while walking two and striking out one. Bryce Einstein relived Stilts and allowed one hit in an inning-and-a-third, and Tyler Bell pitched the ninth inning, not allowing a hit or run while fanning two to preserve the win.

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