NORWOOD, South Australia - The Jet Couriers Melbourne Aces were back to winning ways on Friday night, as they withheld a late charge from the SA Power Networks Adelaide Bite to secure an impressive 7-3 win at Norwood Oval.
Aces starter John Hussey starred on the mound as he picked up the win, conceding only the solitary run from just four hits in his seven and one-third innings pitched, as well as claiming a stellar nine strikeouts.
Righty James Campbell started well for the Bite but wouldn't be happy with his efforts late in the game, as he gave up three of his four conceded runs in the Aces' eighth inning barrage.
Campbell also finished with seven and one-third innings pitched, giving up six hits with four strikeouts as he picked up the loss.
The Aces found the breakthrough when Ryan Casteel led off the fifth with a double. He then reached third on Justin Trapp's bunted single before coming home on Darryl George's ground out.
Tyler Massey then came up with one of the plays of the year in the bottom of the seventh. Joe Sclafani's fly ball to left field looked destined to clear the outfield fence until Massey sent himself flying back through the fence, but not before taking a spectacular catch and sending Sclafani back to the dugout empty-handed.
The Aces secured the win in the top of the eighth with a four-run onslaught after some impromptu fence repair.
Massey launched a three-run homer over the right field fence in the eighth, bringing home Josh Davies and Jarryd Rogers with him.
A Ryan Casteel triple then saw Schlehuber cross the plate to make it 5-0 and put the game out of reach for the Bite.
The Bite pegged one back in the bottom of the eighth, but it was always going to be the Aces' night as they added another two runs in the top of the ninth.
Some smart running by Darryl George allowed him to steal second and then advance to third on a wild pitch before scoring on Jarryd Rogers' single.
The Aces then added a seventh when Jarryd Rogers came home on another wild pitch.
A ninth inning surge from the Bite gave the Aces something to think about, scoring another two in a last-ditch effort to force their way back into the game.
But it would prove to be mere consolation for Adelaide as the game finished with a comprehensive 7-3 win for the Aces, tying the series at one-a-piece.
Righty reliever Brett Zawacki stayed composed through some shaky moments for the Aces at the end of the game, giving up three hits and two runs and claiming one strikeout in his one and two-thirds innings pitched.
The two sides take the field for game three at 7:30PM AEDT on Saturday, as RHP Justin Erasmus (3-2, 2.96) gets his first start for the season, taking on Adelaide's RHP Darren Fidge (0-0, 3.63).
For more information on the series visit the Aces' official website or call on 03 8360 9371.