Drive Holds off Hickory, 3-2, on Sunday
GREENVILLE, S.C. - A strong outing from Hunter Haworth propelled the Greenville Drive to a 3-2 victory over the Hickory Crawdads in the series finale on Sunday afternoon at Fluor Field.
Drive starter Hunter Haworth (4-7) allowed just one hit over 6.0 scoreless innings with seven strikeouts against two walks to earn his fourth win of the year. The righty retired 11 straight at one point, including striking out the side in the fifth.
Offensively, the Drive grabbed the lead with lone runs in the fourth and sixth innings. Back-to-back singles by Tyler Esplin and Triston Casas put two aboard in the fourth for Jordan Wren, who brought home Esplin with a RBI groundout to second to put the home team in front, 1-0.
A lead-off double by Kervin Suarez got things going in the sixth. He would move to third on a groundout and score on a sac fly by Esplin to push the lead to 2-0.
Hickory got on the aboard with a run in the seventh. A lead-off single by Ryan Anderson was followed by an RBI double from Pedro Gonzalez to cut the lead to 2-1. Hickory threatened for more, loading the bases with one out but Yoan Aybar worked out of the jam with a flyout and groundout.
The Drive added a key insurance run in the eighth. Jonathan Ortega singled and Suarez followed with a hit-by-pitch to put two aboard with one out. After a popout, Esplin came up big again with an RBI single to left to make it a two-run lead again at 3-1.
Hickory would not go quietly in the ninth. Kole Enright hit a solo home run to left, his eighth of the season, to make it a one-run game at 3-2. Jax Biggers then drew a two-out walk, bringing the go-ahead run to plate but Oddanier Mosqueda finished it off, getting a flyout to end it and preserve the Drive win.
Hickory starter Abdiel Mendoza (2-2) suffered the loss, allowing two runs on four hits with three strikeouts against no walks. Mosqueda earned his first save of the season, allowing a solo home run and a pair of walks against one strikeout in 2.0 innings of relief work.
Esplin carried the day for the Drive offense, going 2-for-3 with a sac fly, a run and two RBI. Ortega put together his second straight two-hit game, going 2-for-3 with a double and a run, while Suarez and Casas each recorded a hit.
The Drive will have an off-day on Monday before opening a three-game series at Hagerstown on Tuesday.
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