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GJ Rockies Rally to Clinch Series Versus Owlz in 100-Degree Heat

Colorado Rockies Closing Pitcher Rafael Betancourt Makes Relief Appearance for Grand Junction Rockies

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Updated: Sun, 06 Jul 2014 11:22:16 MST

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. -- Revenge is a dish best served in 100-degree heat, or something like that. After falling to the Orem Owlz 9-7 Saturday night, the Grand Junction Rockies rebounded to take the rubber match of the series, defeating the Owlz 11-8 in the summer heat Sunday at Suplizio Field.

For the third consecutive game, the GJ Rockies found the scoresheet first, taking a 1-0 lead on Randy Reyes' RBI single in the bottom of the third inning.

And for the third consecutive game, the Owlz would claw their way back into the game. The Owlz hit two home runs in the top of the fifth -- Andrew Daniel with a three-run shot, and Zach Houchins a two-run homer -- to give the Owlz a 5-2 lead.

Dom Nunez invited himself to the party, leading off the bottom of the fifth with a solo home run, cueing a three-run rally. Luis Castro scored from third on a balk, and a couple batters later Luis Jean singled to left to score Kevin Padlo, tying the gave a five apiece.

Colorado Rockies closer Rafael Betancourt, recovering from Tommy John surgery last September, made his 2014 debut with the Grand Junction Rockies tonight. Betancourt relieved starter Javier Palacios in the sixth inning. Betancourt gave up one hit, walked one, and struck out one in his only inning.

The Owlz took advantage of Betancourt's absence in the seventh, tacking on three runs to take an 8-5 lead off Miguel Hermosillo's three-run homer over the right field wall.

The Rockies would not go away, though. Dom Nunez tied the game in the bottom of the eighth with a line drive 2 RBI single to right field, knotting the game up once again.

Later in the inning, with the bases loaded, Padlo found his clutch gene, and ripped a double to left-center, emptying the bases and giving the Rockies an 11-8 lead.

Closer Matt Pierpont earned his third save of the season, throwing a perfect ninth inning.

With the win, the GJ Rockies pulled within three games of the Owlz in the Pioneer League South Division, as the first quarter of the 2014 concluded.

The GJ Rox have Monday off, and then host the Missoula Osprey for a four game series at Suplizio starting Tuesday.

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