Adam Oller collected 12 strikeouts against the Otters, allowing two hits in seven innings of shutout baseball.
The Otters only had one hit through the first five innings, a single by Keith Grieshaber in the top of the first inning.
Oller had the Otters off-balance with his fastball and breaking pitches Tuesday night.
The Thunderbolts’ offense gathered momentum in the second inning.
After Windy City’s Dash Winningham hit a solo home run to give the Thunderbolts a 1-0 lead, they had men on second and third with one out.
Blair Beck hit a ground ball to Otters third baseman Ryan Long who scooped and threw to catcher Mike Rizzitello, putting the Thunderbolts’ designated hitter Derek Bangert in a run down. After a throw-back from Rizzitello to Long, the All-Star third baseman used his speed and athleticism by diving headfirst, extending his glove to tag the right foot of Bangert. Despite the tag made by Long, the home plate umpire ruled Bangert safe, giving the Thunderbolts a 2-0 lead.
The Thunderbolts would add two more runs on a sac-fly from Brynn Martinez and an RBI double from David Oppenheim, making the score 4-0 after two innings.
Oppenheim delivered another blow in the fourth inning, smacking a two-RBI single in the fourth to extend the Thunderbolts advantage to 6-0.
The former USC Trojan for the Thunderbolts accounted for three RBIs on two hits.
That Oppenheim single would end the night for Otters starter Tyler Beardsley, who allowed five earned runs on five hits in five innings.
With the score 7-0 in the eighth, Grieshaber, who accounted for the first three of the Otters’ five hits, knocked in Rizzitello on an RBI single over the head of Martinez.
In the ninth, with two outs, Mitchell Hansen launched a deep solo home run to right-center field to give the Otters their second run of the game.
After a Rizzitello walk, Jack Meggs smacked an RBI double, making the score 7-3.
Game two of the series is Wednesday at 10:35 a.m. from Ozinga Field in Crestwood, Ill. with right-hander tabbed to take the baseball for the Otters against his former club.