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Aviators Soar To Win Over Shreveport

June 13, 2004 - Central Baseball League (Central League) - Coastal Bend Aviators News Release

Robstown, TX– Marcus Knight’s bases-loaded single in the bottom of the 7th snapped a three-all tie and provided the game-winner for Aviators rookie Lavelle Morgan, who with relief help from Rob Elias and Jorge Huerta bested Shreveport 5-4 in front of 1,621 Sunday night at Fairgrounds Field in Robstown…the Aviators putting a halt to the Sports three game winning streak.

It looked like it would be Shreveport’s night as the Sports struck for three runs in the 1st inning – Vernon Spearman led off with a walk, stole second, went to third on a throwing error by Aviators catcher Bryan Loeb and scored on a Derek Patterson infield single. Jorge Alvarez followed with a double to put runners at second and third…then Derek Henderson’s sacrifice fly to center knocked in both Patterson and Alvarez to give the Sports the early advantage. Coastal Bend fought back to plate a run in the 3rd off Shreveport starter Jason Slanina (David Bell scoring from third on a Carlos Adolfo sac fly) and tied the score with two in the 4th – Morgan, hitting for himself, doubled and came home on a double by Mike Guerrero…Guerrero scoring two batters later on an RBI single by John Ramistella.

Morgan kept Shreveport off the scoreboard, striking out a career-high eight and retiring 11 of the last 12 Sports batters he faced. The Aviators went ahead to stay in the 7th – an Edwin Maldonado double and back-to-back walks to Auntwon Riggins and Carlos Adolfo loaded the bases, setting the stage for Knight, who punched a sinking liner into center field to plate Maldonado and Riggins to put Coastal Bend out in front 5-3. Shreveport trimmed the Aviators lead with a run in the 8th off Elias (Henderson singling home Keto Anderson) but Huerta – making just his second appearance as a pro and with the potential tying run in scoring position – came out of the Coastal Bend bullpen to strike out Michael Hicks to end the threat. In the 9th Huerta surrendered a two-out single to Jose Gonzalez, who promptly stole second…but with the tying run again in scoring position, Spearman struck out looking to give the Aviators just their third win in the last 14 games.

Morgan (2-3) went seven innings to pick up the win for Coastal Bend, with Huerta earning his first save of the year…Slanina (1-3) took the loss for Shreveport. Knight went 2-for-4 to lead the Aviators eight-hit attack…Tony Mack had two of the Sports seven hits on the night. Sunday’s win improved Coastal Bend’s season record to 17-19 while Shreveport slipped to 19-16 and fell two games back of first place Pensacola in the Central Baseball League’s East Divison. Monday marks the finale of the four-game series with right-hander Jose Luis Lopez (4-2) on the mound for the Aviators; the Sports will counter with righty Chad Yates (0-0).

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