Crawdads Squash Hoppers with 16 Runs
Hickory, NC - The Crawdads magic number for a playoff berth is down to six after Friday night's 16-5 romp of the Greensboro Grasshoppers.
The Crawdads scored the first run of the game, putting a run up in the first. Jonathan Ornelas started off inning with a walk and advanced to third on a single by Jax Biggers. Josh Jung grounded into a double play but Ornelas was able to score on the play.
Greensboro evened the score at one in the second inning.
The 'Dads quickly took the lead back, scoring three in the bottom half of the inning. Ryan Anderson and Miguel Aparicio began the inning with back-to-back doubles to put runners on second and third. Frainyer Chavez doubled to score both runners and put the Crawdads up by two. Ornelas singled in Chavez, pushing the score to 4-1.
The Grasshoppers added another run in the top of the third but still trailed by two.
In the bottom half of the inning, the Crawdads took a four-run lead as they added on another pair of runs. The 'Dads got two runners aboard as Tyreque Reed doubled and Melvin Novoa was hit by a pitch. Aparicio moved both up on a ground out. Kole Enright hit the Crawdads' fourth double of the night to drive in Reed and Novoa.
The 'Dads scored once again in the fourth inning. Reed collected his second double and third hit of the game. He came home on a single by Novoa to make the score 7-2.
The offense erupted for seven runs in the fifth to take a 14-3 lead. After the first two batters of the inning were retired, Chavez drew a walk and Ornelas was hit by a pitch. Chavez and Ornelas stole second and third, their sixteenth and thirteenth steals of the season, respectively. Biggers hit a single to bring in the first two runs. He got himself in scoring position with his eleventh stolen base of the year. The Grasshoppers hit Jung with a pitch in the next at bat. Tyreque Reed singled in Biggers. Novoa drove a double to left to score Jung and Reed. Once again, the 'Dads got a free base as Anderson was hit. Aparicio hit a singled to bring in Novoa and Enright followed up with a RBI single to plate Anderson.
Greensboro picked up a run in the sixth and two in the eighth but still trailed the 'Dads by nine.
The Crawdads struck again in the bottom of the eight for two runs. Enright and Ornelas singled to get things started. A wild pitch allowed them to take second and third. Biggers delivered a two-run single to push the lead back to eleven.
The series continues tomorrow evening with an App State hat giveaway to the first 1,000 fans courtesy of Blue Ridge Energy, Propane and Fuels and WHKY 1290AM and 102.3FM. The 'Dads will also be celebrating the 80thanniversary of the Wizard of Oz throughout the night. Following the game, select Crawdads players will be signing autographs.
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