LANCASTER — It was a pitchers’ duel, rather than a punchers’ duel one night later.
Unfortunately for Lancaster, they came unarmed defensively.
Two costly errors abetted a four-run seventh inning that lifted the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes to a 7-2 victory over the JetHawks Thursday night at The Hangar.
Rancho took 3-of-4 games in the series to extend its California League South lead over Lancaster to three games.
The teams were all business after Wednesday’s 18-8 debacle when a low-earth-orbit bat flip by Rancho’s Marcus Chiu after a three-run homer brought both benches onto the field.
Chiu made a nuisance of himself again with a two-out RBI double rifled to the wall in center field putting Rancho ahead 3-2 in the seventh inning.
Don’t look for the Quakes’ seventh inning on any JetHawks highlight reels.
Starling Heredia tucked a double inside the first base bag for openers. Jordan Procyshen got a sacrifice bunt down, only to see JetHawks reliever Nick Kennedy pounce in plenty of time to erase Heredia at third base.
Instead, the left-hander threw an NBA bounce pass past the bag and down the left field line. Heredia scored and Procyshen took second base.
Kennedy devoured Drew Avans’ attempted safety squeeze for second out before Chiu struck again.
Jeter Downs, the Dodgers’ No. 7 prospect, rolled an RBI single through the hole just past lunging JetHawks shortstop Ryan Vilade.
When onrushing left fielder Sean Bouchard didn’t get the tailgate all the way down, the ball rolled nearly to the warning track as Jeter circled the bases for a little league home run.
JetHawks starter Antonio Santos deserved a better fate.
Against a team that scored 16 runs with 18 hits one night earlier, Santos limited the Quakes to one run over six innings, not walking a single batter.
Santos made two runs scored in the fourth inning stand tall.
Carlos Herrera and Luis Castro opened the inning with successive singles. Casey Golden’s sacrifice fly scored Herrera, and Castro rode home on a Bouchard double to the center field warning track.
There was some good news Thursday for Lancaster.
The Colorado Rockies announced they will promote top prospect Brendan Rodgers to the major leagues on Friday.
In 2017, Rodgers joined Jose Altuve as the only JetHawks ever to bat .400 over the first two months of a season.
Rodgers will report to the Rockies in Philadelphia.
He becomes the 155th player in Lancaster franchise history to reach the major leagues.