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Dillas win 6-2, eliminate Aviators from playoff contention

August 19, 2004 - Central Baseball League (Central League) - Coastal Bend Aviators News Release

Robstown, TX– Lefthander Jason Stockstill held Coastal Bend to just one hit over eight shutout innings and Amarillo provided him with more than enough offense as the Dillas downed the Aviators 6-2 Thursday night at Fairgrounds Field…with the win, Amarillo clinched the West Division’s final post-season berth and officially eliminated Coastal Bend from playoff contention.

Early in the contest, Aviators starting pitcher Jose Luis Lopez matched Stockstill zero for zero, not allowing a hit through the first four innings. The Dillas finally broke through in the 5th – Jeremy Todd led off the inning with a double and went to third on a base hit by Dallas McMann. Two batters later Trent Otis shot a single to right to plate Todd…then McMann scored when Aviators second baseman Edwin Maldonado booted a Ben Tinius grounder to put Amarillo up 2-0. In the 6th the Dillas extended their lead when Odannis Ayala doubled and eventually scored when McMann’s high chopper to shortstop was muffed by J.R. Cortez.

The Aviators didn’t get their first hit until the bottom of the 6th inning when Marcus Knight lined a clean single to center…but while Stockstill kept Coastal Bend off the scoreboard, Amarillo tacked on three more insurance runs. In the 8th two walks an error loaded the bases…then Todd popped a bloop single over the drawn-in infield to plate Ayala and Dan Meier to give the Dillas a 5-0 lead. Amarillo scored a 9th inning run off Aviators reliever Kevin Seibert – Tinius doubling and scoring from third on a Dan Meier sacrifice fly – and Coastal Bend went into the bottom of the 9th looking up at a 6-0 deficit. The Aviators avoided the shutout when Mike Guerrero singled home Eric Battersby and Trey Salinas scored on an Andrew Kasperek groundout, but it was far too little and far too late…Dillas reliever Shawn Morgan got Maldonado to pop up to second to end the game and give Amarillo the playoff-clinching victory.

Stockstill (10-9) struck out eight in picking up the victory, with Lopez (9-6) taking the loss despite allowing just one earned run in seven-plus innings of work. Todd led Amarillo’s seven-hit attack with a 2-for-3 night to go along with his two RBI…Coastal Bend finished the evening with just four hits. Thursday’s loss dropped the Aviators to 18-28 in the second half and 42-52 overall, while Amarillo improved their second half record to 22-24 and overall mark to 35-57. Game four of the series is slated for Friday night in Robstown…Coastal Bend will send lefthander Matt Rohr (1-2) to the mound, while the Dillas are expected to start righty Marcus Castillo (4-5 with Amarillo, 6-8 overall).

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