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HERD HEADS HOME ON DOWN NOTE CUBS MUSCLE UP TO COMPLETE SWEEP

The Iowa Cubs sent the Buffalo Bisons home with their tails between their legs, completing a four-game sweep with a 7-4 win Thursday night.

The Bisons will start a 10-game, nine-day homestand tonight (7:30, Empire, 550) when they face the second-place Nashville Sounds. They will play four games over three days.

The Herd, which rode into Des Moines on a 10-1 hot streak that had pushed its American Association East lead to 8 1/2 games, saw Iowa erupt for four runs in the eighth inning behind a three-run home run from Pedro Valdes and a solo shot by former Bison Rod McCall. The Cubs battled back from a 4-3 deficit in front of 8,402 fans at Sec Taylor Stadium.

McCall, who started the season with Buffalo, added a two-run shot in the seventh and finished with four RBIs. He has 10 home runs this season, four against the Herd.

Buffalo had taken a 4-1 lead in the top of the seventh on two home runs of their own.

Torey Lovullo led off the seventh with a solo shot, his eighth.

Alex Ramirez then reached on an error and moved to third on a double by Einar Diaz. Les Norman capped off the inning with a three-run blast, his 10th, off Iowa starter Rodney Myers.

Buffalo starter Ben Blomdahl (5-7) gave up six earned runs on 10 hits in 7 1/3 innings.

Iowa opened the scoring in the second inning when Valdes scored on a sacrifice fly by McCall.

Cubs reliever Paul Fletcher (8-6) picked up the win in 1 2/3 innings of relief while closer Mark Pisciotta came on to pitch the ninth.

Herd third baseman Jeff Manto went 0-4 to snap his 10-game hitting streak.

The Bisons finished the season 1-8 in Iowa. It was the first time the Bisons have been swept in a series this season.

The Bisons will send Steve Kline (3-2, 3.96) to the mound tonight to face Nashville's Nelson Cruz (9-6, 5.25).

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