SIOUX FALLS – The Sioux Falls Canaries suffered a lopsided 12-2 loss to the Amarillo Sox on Sunday afternoon at Sioux Falls Stadium to set up a rubber game for the season finale on Monday.
Amarillo (52-47) kept their playoff hopes alive with the victory, remaining at least one game behind South Division leading Grand Prairie and Laredo.
The Sox jumped on Canaries starter Kyle Vazquez (3-5) for four runs in the third inning, never looking back after Chris Valencia's RBI single. Amarillo batted around with three hits, and they took advantage of an error, a walk and a hit batsman.
Jake Taylor doubled in the Canaries' first run in the fourth inning to cut the lead to 4-1, but Amarillo responded with five more runs in the fifth. Kyle Nichols delivered the big blow with a two-run home run.
The Sox amassed 14 hits total, and Nichols finished 2-for-4 with three RBI. K.C. Serna and Adam De La Garza each had three hits.
Kevin Dultz lined a solo home run to left in the seventh inning, his second of the year, for the only other Canaries run.
Vazquez lost for the third time as a starter, allowing nine runs, six earned, and 10 hits in five innings. He walked three and struck out two. The Birds record dropped to 41-58.
Despite three hit batters and a wild pitch, Joe Newby (7-5) picked up the win for Amarillo. He had a quality start, allowing only one run and two hits in six innings. He walked two and fanned six.
The final game of the year is at 12:05 p.m. on Labor Day, Monday, September 2. All seats are just $5. The game will be broadcast on Sioux Falls Sports Radio KWSN 1230-AM, 98.1-FM and www.kwsn.com.