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Aviators Split Doubleheader with Fort Worth

June 26, 2007 - American Association (AA) - Coastal Bend Aviators News Release

After travelling all night from West Florida, Coastal Bend had to wait an extra 3 hours for rain to subside before starting their doubleheader against Fort Worth. The Aviators kept their focus and earned a split with the Cats, winning game one 2-0 before dropping the second game 4-2.

Miguel Martinez, who has been an intergral part of the Aviators bullpen, made his first start of the year in game one and turned in a fine performance. He went 4.2 innings, struckout 3 and allowed just 3 hits. Tim Haines kept the Cats off the scoreboard after Martinez departed by striking out third baseman Terrence Green with runners at the corners and 2 out in the bottom of the fifth. Haines would earn the victory and improve to 2-3.

Offensively for the Aviators, James Lofton had an RBI single up the middle in the third to score Brian Fryer who had 2 hits and a stolen base in each game. Coastal Bend added a run on JD Foust's single to right center in the sixth which scored Grant Richardson. That was all the cushion Tom Atlee needed in the seventh as the Aviators closer dispatched the Cats in order for his 8th save of the season.

Facing Danny Valentin in game two, the Aviators jumped out on top again as Fryer's single and three bases on balls to Aviator batters made it 1-0 with just one out. However a strikeout and groundout ended the inning wihtout any more runs crossing the plate. In the bottom of the first, the Cats would get their first look at newly acquired pitcher Juan Jimeniz. The first two men singled and with outfielder Alan Moye batting a wild pitch advanced them to second and third. Moye's groundout scored the tying run and another wild pitch with catcher Kelley Gulledge at the plate made the score 2-1 Fort Worth.

In the bottom of the third, recently acquired outfielder Trey Roberson led off with a single, stole second, and advanced to third when the throw down to second went into center field. A walk to Cats first baseman Chuck Carter put runners at the corners for John Allen who hit a ball of the left field wall that scored both runners and gave Fort Worth a 4-1 lead.

Valentin, who had settled in nicely after his rocky first inning, made the lead stand up. He pitched the full seven innings setting down the Aviators 1-2-3 in the ninth for the win. He improves his record to 3-1.

The Aviators remain in third place in the Southern Division with a record of 20-23, two games behind second place Shreveport. Game three of the series will be played tomorrow night at 7:05pm. Probable starters are Kevin Hull (4-3, 4.91 ERA) for Coastal Bend and Cory Walters (4-3, 4.73 ERA) for Fort Worth. The game can be heard locally on KOPY 1070 AM or online.

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