ALTON - The Alton River Dragons lost three straight games on Friday and Saturday, losing a 3-2 contest at Lloyd Hopkins Field at Gordon Moore Park Friday to the Clinton, Ia., LumberKings, then losing twice in a doubleheader at the O'Fallon, Mo., Hoots, falling 10-9 and 4-2 at CarShield Field in O'Fallon in Prospect League games played on both days.

The River Dragons saw their second half record fall to 5-9 and currently in fourth place in the Prairie Land Division of the Western Conference, a half-game behind the third place Hoots, two games behind the second place Cape Catfish of Cape Girardeau, Mo., three behind in the loss side, and five-and-a-half games behind the division-leading Thrillville Thrillbilllies of Marion. Alton's overall record is now 14-26.

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In the Friday game against Clinton, which was called after seven innings because of rain and storms that moved through the area, Alton took a 2-0 lead with single runs in the first two innings, only to see the LumberKings score twice in the third and once in the fourth to take a 3-2 lead. The storms moved in and the game was never fully completed, giving Clinton the win after seven innings.

Dominic Decker and Alex Hagen had the only two hits for the River Dragons, while Drake Westcott of Edwardsville and Jak Sinclair had the team's only RBIs. Aiden Joaquin started on the mound and was charged with the loss, going four innings and allowing three runs on four hits, walking two and striking out five. Scott Detweiler pitched two innings and gave up a hit while walking two and fanning four.

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In the first game Saturday at O'Fallon, the River Dragons got off to a 3-0 lead with two runs in the first and one in the second, with the Hoots scoring a single run in the third to cut the lead to 3-1. In the fourth, Alton added on two more runs to go up 5-1, but O'Fallon scored three times in the home half to trail 5-4. The River Dragons then scored once in the sixth and three times in the seventh to extend the lead to 9-4, but the Hoots rallied in the bottom of the seventh to score six runs and take their 10-9 win.

Chase Bloomer had two hits, including a solo homer, and a RBI for the River Dragons, while Westcott had a hit and three RBIs, Dominic Decker had a hit and drove in two runs, Tyler Imbach came up with a hit and Evan Evola also drove in a run. Charlie Hodges started as pitcher and threw five innings, allowing four runs on five hits, walking five and striking out seven, while Tyson Greene pitched the sixth inning, giving up an unearned run without a hit and fanning one, Sinclair pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up five runs on only one hit while walking four and striking out one and Victor Heredia was charged with the loss, allowing a run on two hits.

In the nightcap, the Hoots took a 1-0 lead with a run in the bottom of the first, with the River Dragons tying the game with a single run in the top of the second. O'Fallon retook the lead with a run in the bottom of the fourth to go ahead 2-1, but Alton tied things up at 2-2 with a run in the top of the sixth. The Hoots got the two winning runs in the bottom of the sixth and held Alton scoreless in the seventh to gain the win and the doubleheader sweep.

R.J. LaRocco had two hits for the River Dragons, while both Diego Murillo and Kaden Coutts had a hit and RBI each and Westcott, Bryce Zupan of Civic Memorial and Bloomer had a hit apiece. J.T. Miller started on the mound and pitched 5.2 innings, giving up two runs on two hits, walking three and striking out 11, while Luke Gasser was charged with the loss, throwing the final third of the sixth inning and allowed two unearned runs on two hits.

The River Dragons host Cape Monday evening at 6:35 p.m. and starts a road trip on Tuesday, playing at Thrillville Tuesday evening at 6:45 p.m., then have a two game set Wednesday and Friday at the Catfish, the first game starting at 2 p.m. and after the off day, play the second game of the series with a 6:35 p.m. start. Alton concludes the road swing on Saturday at the Danville Dans at 6:30 p.m., then briefly returns home to play the Terre Haute, Ind., REX July 23 at 5:35 p.m.

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