O'FALLON, MO--The River City Rascals clinched the Frontier League West Division championship on Sunday night at CarShield Field, beating the Florence Freedom 9-0 in the regular season finale. Dan Ludwig (5-4) threw seven shutout innings on three days rest, allowing just two hits, one walk, and striking out three. Braxton Martinez drove in four runs for the Rascals in the victory.
Zach Lavy put the Rascals on the board with an RBI single in the fourth inning, and Paul Kronenfeld made it 2-0 on his hit-by-pitch with the bases loaded in the fifth. Kevin Suarez's RBI groundout made it 3-0. The Rascals scored four in the seventh, on a two-run single from Martinez, with two more runs scoring on a Freedom error. Martinez hit another two-run single in the eighth to bring the lead to 9-0.
Jackson Sigman and Chad Gendron pitched scoreless eighth and ninth innings, respectively, in relief of Ludwig to close out the victoy. Mike Jurgella reached base five times, on three walks and two hits.
Steve Hagen (7-8) took the loss for the Freedom, allowing three runs in six innings.
The Rascals (52-44) begin their playoff series against the Joliet Slammers on Tuesday night at Route 66 Stadium in Joliet, IL with a start time TBA.