ROSEMONT, Ill. -- The Sioux City Explorers broke a two-game losing skid by scoring early and holding off Chicago 3-2 here Monday.
A pair of home runs gave the X's all the offense they could muster and Justin Vernia and two relievers made it stand up as Sioux City improved to 37-12 on the season. They are atop the South Division while Chicago fell to 18-30 and remained at the bottom of the North Division.
The Explorers scored all three runs in the second inning as Jose Sermo led off the frame with a solo home run. That was followed by a Jay Baum single and Dexture McCall followed with another deep shot to make it 3-0.
Chicago scored one unearned run in the second as a two-out error allowed Tony Rosselli to reach base and score on Michael Falsetti's single. Another run would come in the fourth inning on a solo home run from Falsetti.
Justin Vernia went six innings, allowed five hits, one earned run and six strikeouts. Tyler Fallwell and Eric Karch allowed two hits over the final three innings of scoreless relief.
Sermo, Baum and Dylan Kelly all had two hits apiece for Sioux City.
The two teams play the second game of a three-game set Tuesday at 7:05 p.m.