BILLINGS. Mont. -- Even with the wild August weather, few saw the Ogden Raptors' power surge coming on Sunday afternoon.
Ogden Raptors right fielder Joey Curletta hit two home runs to key an 8-3 Pioneer League victory over the Billings Mustangs Sunday at Dehler Park.
Curletta hit his first home run as part of a five-run fourth inning. Trailing 2-1, Alex Santana started the inning with a single to left field. Curletta then smashed a 2-1 pitch over the wall in center field to give the Raptors the lead.
The Raptors weren't done as Gerson Nunez then drew a walk, and Dillon Moyer drove him in with a triple to center field. Zach Babitt then grounded to second base, but it was mishandled by Avain Rachal for an error and allowed Moyer to score.
Adam Law then singled to center to put runners on the corners and knock Billings' starter Pedro Diaz out of the game.
Two batters later, Justin Chigbogu ended the scoring with a sacrifice fly to left, putting the Raptors ahead 6-2.
Curletta hit his second homer in the ninth inning. With Ogden leading 7-3, Curletta hit another 2-1 pitch out to right field for his first career multi-homer game.
Sunday was the fourth time the Raptors have had a player hit two home runs in a game. Jacob Scavuzzo turned the trick twice, hitting two home runs against Orem on July 7 and again a week later against Helena on July 15. Justin Chigbogu was the last Raptor to have a multi-homer game, going deep twice against Idaho Falls on Aug. 23.
Curletta's big day overshadowed a solid performance from the Raptors pitching staff.
Scott Barlow had a quality start, pitching six innings and allowing just three runs on six hits with five strikeouts.
Relievers Michael Johnson and James Baune combined for three shutout innings, giving up just two hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Chigbogu, along with Curletta, had three hits with the first baseman hitting two doubles, and Kyle Farmer hit three singles.
The Raptors and Mustangs continue their four-game series tonight. Ogden's Francisco Villa takes the mound against Luke Moran for Billings. Villa is fifth in the Pioneer League with a 4.26 ERA, and Moran leads all starters in fewest walks per nine inning at 1.53.
The teams meet again on Tuesday, then the Raptors head home for a four-game series with the Orem Owlz at Lindquist Field.