Sports & Recreation
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Marco LaNave   
Tuesday, 26 August 2014 08:37
Quad Cities stays two games behind Wisconsin for a second-half playoff spot with seven games remaining
DAVENPORT, Iowa (August 25, 2014) – The Quad Cities River Bandits overcame a 2-0 deficit with a fourth-inning, game-tying, two-run home run by first baseman A.J. Reed and a go-ahead, solo home run by right fielder James Ramsay in the sixth inning of a 3-2 win over the Cedar Rapids Kernels in front of 2,673 at Modern Woodmen Park Monday night.
With its first three-game winning streak since July 29, Quad Cities (31-32 second half, 66-66 overall) stayed two games behind Wisconsin (33-30) for the final second-half playoff spot in the Western Division with seven games remaining. With their fifth win in their last six games, the River Bandits moved one-half game ahead of Peoria (30-32), which will play a doubleheader Tuesday in Clinton.
Quad Cities pitchers struck out 18 batters for the first time since their home opener of April 8, 2011, when they struck out the same number in a 7-4 win over Beloit. The 33 combined strikeouts by Quad Cities and Cedar Rapids (39-24, 70-63) were the most in a River Bandits game since June 28, 2010, when Quad Cities and Wisconsin combined for 33 strikeouts in a 14-inning, 7-6 Quad Cities win.
On Monday, River Bandits right-hander Troy Scribner and Kernels left-hander Stephen Gonsalves each struck out five batters in the first three innings of a scoreless game. In the fourth inning, Cedar Rapids second baseman Tanner Vavra hit a leadoff double and scored on a double by catcher Michael Quesada. Shortstop Ryan Walker singled to center field to drive in Quesada for a 2-0 lead. After Scribner struck out designated hitter Jonatan Hinojosa and third baseman Logan Wade, he walked first baseman Chad Christensen. That ended Scribner's outing after 3 2/3 innings, in which he allowed two earned runs on six hits and three walks with seven strikeouts. Left-hander Jordan Mills began by hitting right fielder Alex Swim with a pitch to load the bases before striking out center fielder Max Murphy to end the inning.
With a 2-0 lead, Gonsalves hit left fielder Ryan Bottger with a pitch to start the bottom of the fourth inning. Gonsalves fanned designated hitter Chase McDonald, before Reed hit his sixth Midwest League home run – and second in three games – to make it 2-2. Gonsalves struck out four of the next five batters to finish five innings, allowing two earned runs on two hits with no walks and 10 strikeouts.
Mills struck out three batters in 1 1/3 innings, before left-hander Chris Lee (8-6) began the sixth inning in a 2-2 tie. Lee pitched a perfect frame, but Kernels right-hander Jared Wilson began the bottom of the sixth inning by allowing Ramsay's third home run – all in the last 16 games – just inside the foul pole down the right-field line. Wilson completed two innings, allowing two hits and one walk with four strikeouts, and left-hander Josue Montanez struck out one batter in one inning. Kernels pitchers struck out at least one batter every inning.
Lee held the 3-2 lead despite the Kernels loading the bases in the seventh inning with his own fielding error and two walks. He struck out Walker to end the third different inning Cedar Rapids left the bases loaded. After a perfect eighth inning and getting the first two outs in the ninth, Lee allowed a single by left fielder J.D. Williams, before right-hander Keegan Yuhl struck out Vavra looking to end the game. The Kernels left 14 total runners on base and struck out at least twice in every inning except the second – the only inning they did not strike out.
Quad Cities concludes its series with Cedar Rapids at 7 p.m. Tuesday, when River Bandits right-hander Michael Feliz (8-4) is scheduled to face Kernels left-hander Lewis Thorpe (3-2). The River Bandits host Clinton for their final three home games Wednesday through Friday.
UP NEXT: Fan Appreciation Week continues Tuesday with Iowa Fan Appreciation Night, when Iowa residents can get $1 bleacher or berm tickets by showing a valid driver's license at the box office. Regular invidivual tickets are Buy-1-Get-1 Free, Kids Eat Free and fans can bring an old can of Mountain Dew to the gates to receive a voucher for a free 16-ounce Mountain Dew. Wednesday is Isle Casino Night and Pay Your Bill Wednesday. Thursday is Modern Woodmen Half-Price Night with a River Bandits hat giveaway, and Friday is Fan Appreciation Night with postgame fireworks. Regular tickets are available at

News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Marco LaNave   
Tuesday, 26 August 2014 08:19
River Bandits have MWL Postseason All-Star in three straight seasons for first time since 1988-92

DAVENPORT, Iowa (Aug. 25, 2014) – Brett Phillips, who played 103 games as an outfielder this season for the Quad Cities River Bandits, has been named a member of the 2014 Midwest League Postseason All-Star team. Phillips' selection marks the third straight season the River Bandits have had a Midwest League Postseason All-Star – a first for the franchise since it had at least one All-Star in each of five straight seasons 1988 to 1992.

Houston's sixth-round pick in 2012 out of Seminole (Fla.) High School, Phillips was promoted to Class-A Advanced Lancaster on August 4, but he still ranks first in the Midwest League in slugging percentage (.521), second in OPS (.883) and third in both batting average (.302) and triples (12). Among all-time Quad Cities single-season marks, his 12 triples place him in a tie for second while his .521 slugging percentage is ninth. Phillips' 14 outfield assists this season are the most in the Midwest League through Sunday.

Over 103 games with the River Bandits, Phillips led the team in hits (116), triples and slugging while ranking second in doubles (21), RBIs (58) and OPS, tied for second in home runs (the first 13 of his career) and third in walks (36) and stolen bases (18). Phillips became the first Quad Cities player since at least 1998 to homer in five straight games when he did so July 26-30.

The 20-year-old Seminole, Fla., native was a starting outfielder for the 2014 Midwest League All-Star Game June 17 in West Michigan and was the youngest position player selected for the Western Division roster. Ranked as the Houston Astros' No. 30 prospect before the season by Baseball America, Phillips also won Quad Cities Player of the Month in April, when he posted a .301 batting average with three triples, two home runs and a team-high 13 RBIs. Phillips had a .394 on-base percentage, .446 slugging percentage, and .840 OPS in 23 games.

The River Bandits have had four postseason all-stars the past three seasons, as outfielder Anthony Garcia and designated hitter Colin Walsh each earned the distinction in 2012, while shortstop Carlos Correa received the honor last year. The Quad Cities franchise has had five Midwest League Postseason All-Stars in eight seasons as a Houston Astros affiliate. Outfielder Richard Hidalgo (1994), left-handed pitcher Tony Mounce (1995) and designated hitter Jim Thomas (1998) were each postseason all-stars.

Phillips is batting .367 with eight doubles, two triples, two homers and seven RBIs in 20 games with Lancaster. He has posted a .427 OBP while slugging .595 for a 1.022 OPS.

UP NEXT: Fan Appreciation Week continues with Illinios Fan Appreciation Night, when Illinois residents can get $1 bleacher or berm tickets by showing a valid driver's license at the box office. Regular bleacher and berm tickets are just $2, as are hot dogs, peanuts, popcorn, nachos, soda, and beer on a Markdown Monday presented by 97X. An all-you-can-ride amusements pass is just $10 on Monday. On Tuesday, Iowa residents can get $1 tickets, and Thursday is Modern Woodmen Half-Price Night, when all regular tickets are half-price. Regular tickets for the homestand through Aug. 29 are available at

ABOUT THE BANDITS: Having just been named Ballpark Digest's winner of Best Ballpark Improvement in America under $1 million, the River Bandits ownership recently made one of the biggest improvements to Modern Woodmen Park since the ballpark was first built back in 1931! A new Ferris wheel, standing 105 feet over the playing field, opened May 24, Space Camp opened June 20; the new Drop-N-Twist debuted in July; and the newly expanded 300-foot long zip line also reopened. In 2013, the team unveiled a new 220-foot long dual zip line, a rock climbing wall, and a number of new bounce houses. Last season, the team's major league affiliate, the Houston Astros, saw all six of its affiliates reach the playoffs - the first time in a decade any MLB team can claim such success. The River Bandits were one of three affiliates to reach the championship round and one of two to win their league championship.



News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Marco LaNave   
Monday, 25 August 2014 13:33
Quad Cities briefly postponed a playoff berth for Cedar Rapids, which clinched after Peoria's loss

DAVENPORT, Iowa (August 24, 2014) – Quad Cities shortstop Thomas Lindauer cut into the Cedar Rapids Kernels' 4-0 lead with a three-run home run in the fifth inning Sunday, and third baseman J.D. Davis broke a 5-5 tie with an eighth-inning, three-run home run to lift the River Bandits to their second win when trailing by four runs this season in an 8-6 final in front of 3,598 at Modern Woodmen Park.

The second straight win for the River Bandits (30-32 second half, 65-66 overall) kept the Kernels (39-23, 70-63) from clinching a second-half playoff berth, until Peoria (30-32) lost, 4-3, in Clinton on Sunday afternoon, making Cedar Rapids the first team in the Midwest League to clinch a postseason berth in the second half. Wisconsin, before hosting Beloit Sunday night, led Quad Cities and Peoria by two-and-a-half games for the only remaining Western Division playoff spot. After Sunday, eight games remain in the regular season.

The Kernels took their first lead in the third inning against River Bandits left-hander Blaine Sims. Right fielder Zack Larson hit a one-out single, and third baseman Jonatan Hinojosa drew a two-out walk. Shortstop Engelb Vielma struck out, but a passed ball by catcher Brett Booth allowed Vielma to reach first base and load the bases. First baseman Chad Christensen hit the next pitch to the bottom of the left-center field wall for a 3-0 Kernels lead. In the fourth inning, left fielder J.D. Williams doubled down the third-base line and went to third base on an error by left fielder Jose Fernandez. Larson's groundout scored Williams for a 4-0 Kernels lead. Sims retired nine of the final 10 batters he faced to pitch six innings, allowing four unearned runs, four hits, three walks, and matching a career high with seven strikeouts.

Kernels left-hander Mat Batts kept the River Bandits scoreless until the fifth inning, when designated hitter A.J. Reed hit a leadoff single to right field, and with two outs, right fielder James Ramsay singled to center field. Lindauer then took Batts deep to the Modern Woodmen Berm in left field. Lindauer's fifth home run – and the first Batts allowed in the Midwest League – cut the deficit to 4-3. Center fielder Bobby Boyd and pinch hitter Ryan Bottger hit consecutive singles to end Batts' outing, but left-hander Brandon Bixler struck out second baseman Marc Wik to keep the one-run lead. Bixler retired the first six batters he faced until Lindauer hit a seventh-inning, two-out double to left field, and Boyd grounded a 3-2 pitch into center field for a game-tying single for the only run Bixler allowed in 2 1/3 innings.

In a 4-4 tie, River Bandits right-hander Raul Rivera began his second relief inning in his Midwest League debut, and allowed three straight one-out singles to center fielder Max Murphy, Williams and designated Logan Wade, whose RBI gave Cedar Rapids a 5-4 lead. Rivera was relieved after allowing one earned run on four hits in 1 1/3 innings, and right-hander Frederick Tiburcio (4-3) entered to get Wade to ground into an inning-ending double play and went on to win his third straight relief outing despite allowing a run in the ninth inning.

With a 5-4 lead, Kernels right-hander Hudson Boyd began the eighth inning by walking Wik. First baseman Chase McDonald reached when Hinojosa misplayed a ground ball at third, and Reed doubled to right field to score the tying run. With runners at second and third bases, Davis launched his fourth Midwest League home run to left-center field for his team's first lead at 8-5. Quad Cities overcame a four-run deficit and won for the first time since a 9-8 win over Clinton after trailing, 7-3, in Game 2 of an April 30 home doubleheader.

Quad Cities continues its series with Cedar Rapids and final homestand at 7:00 p.m. Monday, when River Bandits right-hander Troy Scribner (0-2) is scheduled to face Kernels left-hander Stephen Gonsalves (2-2).

UP NEXT: Fan Appreciation Week continues with Illinios Fan Appreciation Night, when Illinois residents can get $1 bleacher or berm tickets by showing a valid driver's license at the box office. Regular bleacher and berm tickets are just $2, as are hot dogs, peanuts, popcorn, nachos, soda, and beer on a Markdown Monday presented by 97X. An all-you-can-ride amusements pass is just $10 on Monday. On Tuesday, Iowa residents can get $1 tickets, and Thursday is Modern Woodmen Half-Price Night, when all regular tickets are half-price. Regular tickets for the homestand through Aug. 29 are available at

Governor Quinn Statement on Jackie Robinson West Little League Team PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Katie Hickey   
Monday, 25 August 2014 13:31

CHICAGO – Governor Pat Quinn today issued the following statement on the Jackie Robinson West Little League team’s final game of the  Little League World Series:

“Jackie Robinson West has made a legendary run and finished runner-up, placing at the second best spot for any little league team across the world.

“Over these past few weeks, communities across the nation came together to watch these young boys from the South Side of Chicago win game after game against the best young ballplayers in the world.

“Throughout the tournament they have made Illinois proud and represented the very best our state has to offer.

“When they return to Chicago, they will return as true sportsmen. Everyone now knows the Jackie Robinson West team and will remember when communities across our state came together to support their special season.

“I thank Coach Butler and the families of our players who have mentored and supported the Jackie Robinson West team on and off the field. Lessons learned in competitive sports often become values instilled for a lifetime.

“Congratulations on a fantastic season, Jackie Robinson West, our very own dream team. You have made Illinois very proud.”


Winners Named in Iowa State Fair Supreme Six-Horse Hitch PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Lori Chappell   
Friday, 22 August 2014 15:47

DES MOINES, IA (08/22/2014)(readMedia)-- Roby's Belgian of Rockwell City took first place in the Supreme Six-Horse Hitch Showdown held Sunday at the 2014 Iowa State Fair, taking home a $2,000 prize.

Second place and $1,000 were awarded to Hagemann Brothers of Stillman Valley, Ill.

Complete results below:

1) Roby's Belgian, Rockwell City

2) Hagemann Bros., Stillman Valley, Ill.

3) Aaron Mosher, Prophetstown, Ill.

4) Arlin Wareing, Blackfoot, Idaho

5) Dakota Thunder Shires, Sioux Falls, S.D.

6) Double M Farms, Delmar

7) Duane & Sara Herschberger, Milan, Mo.

8) Jenson Shires, LLC, Blair, Neb.

9) Wade Handeland, Radcliffe

10) Mohney Farm Belgians, Benton, Kan.

11) Otte Belgians, North English

12) Morgan Weaver, Afton

13) Mike Minniear, Goodland, Ind.

"Nothing Compares" to the Iowa State Fair. The 2014 Fair ended August 17. The 2015 Iowa State Fair is set August 13-23. For more information, call 800/545-FAIR or visit

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