CLINTON — Nick Neidert pitched seven shutout inning as the Clinton LumberKings defeated Peoria 4-0 in the opening game of the Midwest League playoffs Wednesday night at Ashford University Field.

Neidert, who was 7-3 in the regular season, allowed only three hits and struck out nine with Joey Strain pitching a perfect eighth inning and Matt Walker closing out the Chiefs in the ninth.

The LumberKings, who had the best record in the league in the regular season (87-54), will visit Peoria tonight in the second game of the best-of-three series.

Clinton scratched out a couple of runs early in the game, both of them driven in by James Alfonso. He drove across Alex Jackson with a sacrifice fly in the second, then hit into a fielder’s choice to bring Logan Taylor across the plate in the fourth.

The LumberKings added two more runs in the seventh. Dalton Kelly singled in Luis Liberato and advanced all the way to third when left fielder Craig Aikin threw the ball away. Kelly then scored on another error, by third baseman Leobaldo Pina.

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