The Omaha Storm Chasers hit three home runs within the first four innings, guiding the way to a 6-3 win over the Oklahoma City RedHawks Thursday night at Werner Park.
With the win, the Storm Chasers (32-28) leaped over both the RedHawks and Iowa Cubs in the standings to take sole possession of first place in the American Northern Division.
The Storm Chasers took an early 2-0 lead on a two-run home run by Justin Maxwell in the bottom of the first inning. Entering Thursday, the RedHawk had not allowed a home run in 11 consecutive games.
It wouldn't take nearly that long for the Storm Chasers to hit another homer. Matt Fields connected on a solo shot in the bottom of the second inning out to center field to make it 3-0.
The RedHawks got a homer of their own in the third. Erik Castro hit his second homer of the season with a blast to right field to cut Omaha's lead to two.
Former RedHawk Jimmy Paredes led off the bottom of the fourth inning with another homer for the Storm Chasers, giving Omaha a 4-1 lead. It marked the first time since April 27 the RedHawks allowed three home runs in one game.
The RedHawks got back within two after a RBI single by Marc Krauss in the sixth. Oklahoma City then loaded the bases with two out, but Omaha reliever Casey Coleman struck out L.J. Hoes to end the inning.
Omaha extended its lead back to three runs in the bottom of the inning. With none on and two out, Brett Eibner blooped a single to shallow right field, and Fields followed with a RBI double.
The Storm Chasers took their largest lead of the night on a two-out RBI single by Maxwell in the seventh to make it 6-2. Omaha scored five of its six runs with two outs Thursday night.
Domingo Santana roped a RBI double in the top of the eighth for the RedHawks, plating their third run.
Omaha closer Spencer Patton then entered the game and retired the final five hitters, earning his 12th save of the season.
Storm Chasers starting pitcher Aaron Brooks won his fifth consecutive start, allowing two runs and four hits over 5.2 innings. Brooks (3-1) finished with three strikeouts and one walk. Between the first and sixth innings, he retired 14 of 15 batters.
After making two terrific starts with the Astros, Brett Oberholtzer did not fare as well in his return to the RedHawks. Oberholtzer (1-2) allowed five runs and eight hits over six innings. He struck out six and walked one.
The RedHawks and Storm Chasers meet again Friday night at 7:05 p.m.