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Four-Run Frames Guide Hillcats over P-Nats

April 16, 2019 - Carolina League (CarL) - Potomac Nationals News Release

Lynchburg, VA - The Lynchburg Hillcats (8-5) scored four runs in the first inning and didn't look back as they evened up their series against the Potomac Nationals (6-7) on Monday night, beating the P-Nats 9-3.

Lynchburg RHP Jean Carlos Mejia (W, 2-0) entered his third start of the season with an ERA of 0.82, and the Indians pitching prospect overcame his first adversity of the season thanks to early run support from the Hillcats offense.

RHP Kyle Johnston (L, 0-3), Potomac's Opening Day starter, ran into trouble immediately in the first inning. He allowed a leadoff double to CF Steven Kwan, and three batters later LF Oscar Gonzalez ripped an RBI double off the glove of RF Gage Canning to put the Hillcats ahead 1-0. After an RBI groundout from DH Trenton Brooks extended the lead to 2-0, 1B Dillon Persinger capped the opening rally with a two-run double to give Lynchburg a 4-0 advantage.

Stymied for the first three innings against Mejia, the P-Nats broke through in the fourth. 2B Cole Freeman led off the frame with a single, and scored on LF Telmito Agustin's RBI double. 1B Aldrem Corredor followed with an RBI single, and Canning came through with another run-scoring hit with two outs to draw the deficit to 4-3.

Just as it appeared Potomac was gaining momentum, the Hillcats answered back in the bottom of the fourth with another four-run inning. Gonzalez collected the big hit, a long three-run home run to end Johnston's night and put Lynchburg ahead 7-3. An unearned run scored later on an error by SS David Masters to extend the lead to 8-3.

Both teams provided excellent relief, with LHP Hayden Howard and RHP Andrew Lee combining for 5.0 innings with one earned run allowed from the Nationals bullpen. Lee allowed an RBI double to RF Austen Wade in the eighth inning to cap the scoring, but fanned five batters to establish a Potomac season high in a relief role.

RHP Jared Robinson contributed 3.0 scoreless innings for the Hillcats, and RHP Robert Broom finished things off with a 1-2-3 ninth.

The P-Nats end their weeklong road trip on Wednesday afternoon as they look to take the rubber game of their series in Lynchburg. RHP Jackson Tetreault gets the nod for Potomac against Hillcats RHP Eli Morgan. First pitch from City Stadium is set for 1:00 pm, and the Potomac broadcast will get underway at 12:45 with the P-Nats Leadoff Show. You can listen live at, at, or on the TuneIn Radio App.

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