BILLINGS, Mont. — The Ogden Raptors enjoyed their first shutout win of the season so much, they did it again on Thursday night.
A night after Jharel Cotton and two relievers shut down Missoula 5-0 to close out that Pioneer League series, the Ogden pitching staff posted a just-as-impressive 7-0 victory over North Division leading Billings on Thursday at Dehler Park.
The win helped the Raptors even their second-half record at 9-9 (30-26 overall), just 21⁄2 games out of first place in the tightly bunched South Division.
The Raptors scored a trio of runs in the first inning, then added three more in the sixth and one in the ninth.
Ogden’s trio of Ross Stripling, Kazuki Nishijima and Jason West combined on a four-hit shutout. Wednesday’s clean sheet was the first for the Raptors.
The teams meet again tonight.
Ogden manager Damon Berryhill was ejected in the sixth inning after a dispute with the home plate umpire.
Leadoff hitter Delvis Morales had three hits and Justin Boudreaux had a double in the sixth inning to pace the Ogden attack, which include six RBIs with two outs in the inning.
Corey Seager had a pair of RBIs.
The Raptors benefitted from a pair of first-inning fielding errors by the Mustangs to stake Stripling to the lead. He went two innings, then turned the ball over to Nishijima, who worked five innings, allowing two hits and striking out four to improve to 7-1 on the season.
West worked the final two innings, giving up the only walk of the game for the Raptors staff.
In the sixth Jeremy Rathjen walked and scored on Boudreaux’s double. Boudreaux later scored on Jose Capellan’s single, and Capellan came home on Kevin Thompson’s RBI single.
In the ninth, Malcolm Holland walked, scoring on Eric Smith’s single.
Billings starter Jonathan Moscott took the loss.