09/04/2017 10:15 PM
GRAND PRAIRIE -- The Texas AirHogs scored a wild walkoff win in the season finale vs. Cleburne Monday, downing the Railroaders on a steal at home plate by Casio Grider. His incredible stolen base helped Texas take the final game of the 2017 season by a final score of 8-7 in 11 innings.
TJ Bozeman got the start for the AirHogs and lasted 8 innings, striking out 8 and allowing 4 runs. The AirHogs erased a 4-3 deficit in the 6th vs. Cleburne starter Laetten Galbraith by scoring 4 times. Ryne Willard keyed the rally in the 6th frame with 1 of his 2 extra-base hits, knocking in a pair of runners on a triple and scoring himself on 1 of 3 errors in the game by the Railroaders.
Jesse Pratt entered for the save in the 9th, but could not hold on to a 7-4 lead. Geraldo Valentin provided the key moment in a 3-run rally for the Railroaders, driving in 2 with 2 outs to make it 7-7. Pratt stranded the bases loaded in the 9th and held Cleburne scoreless in the 10th and 11th to eventually earn the win.
In the 11th, Grider doubled to left with 1 out and moved to 3rd base on a flyout by Levi Scott. A 2-2 offering from Cleburne relief man Roby Romero to Jake Taylor ended up in the dirt, and Grider stole home for the 2nd time this season to help the AirHogs earn the win.
The walkoff was the 4th of the season for Texas. The stolen base was Grider’s 40th. He finishes 2nd in the Association in stolen bases, trailing only teammate Alvaro Rondon, who set a single-season record with 60 in 2017.
Scott finished with 2 RBIs and 2 extra-base hits, as did Willard. Beamer Weems finished with 3 hits for the 2nd straight game. Cleburne was led by Valentin, who racked up 3 RBIs. The win improved Pratt to 3-4. It was his 1st win with Texas this season. The loss dropped Romero to 0-1.
Texas (43-57) finishes the 2017 season in 3rd place in the South Division. Continue to follow the club this offseason on Facebook and Twitter @TXAirHogs.