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Spokane Indians win pitching duel, Thompson sharp in shutout

It was an old-fashioned pitcher’s duel in Pasco on Monday as the Spokane Indians snapped a two-game skid and beat the Tri-City Dust Devils 1-0 in the second of a three-game Northwest League series at Gesa Stadium.

Indians starter Tyree Thompson allowed two hits and two walks over 5 2/3 shutout innings with three strikeouts, while Tri-City’s Aaron Leasher struck out four over five innings and gave up two runs and one walk.

Neither were around long enough, however, to gain a decision.

The Indians (14-12, third in North Division) finally broke through in the seventh. Austin O’Banion reached on a fielding error by Tri-City first baseman Chris Mattison, then went to second when Clay Middleton drew a walk on a full count.

Melvin Novoa successfully sacrificed to move both runners up, then Curtis Terry singled through the left side to plate O’Banion with the game’s only run.

Tri-City went to the pen for Mark Zimmerman, and he struck out Cristian Inoa for the second out. Middleton then tried to steal home and was nailed at the plate by shortstop Luis Almanzar.

Tri-City (15-11) had its leadoff hitter reach in the ninth, but pinch-runner Felipe Blanco was picked off attempting to steal second.

Joe Barlow (5-1) earned the win with 2 1/3 scoreless relief innings. Joe Kuzia picked up his third save.

The teams play the series finale on Tuesday at 7:15 p.m.

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