Naturals Sweep Doubleheader to Close First Half
North Little Rock, AR-The season's first half closed with thud for the Arkansas Travelers as they were swept in a doubleheader by the Northwest Arkansas Naturals, falling by a 3-2 score in both games. The Travs closed the first half with five consecutive losses.
In the opening game, Dylan Unsworth was brilliant on the mound for the Travelers. He did not allow a baserunner until hitting a batter with one out in the fourth and did not allow a hit until there were two out in the sixth. Unsworth did all this while working with a slim one-run lead. The Travelers lone early tally came on a Kyle Waldrop homer in the second inning.
Northwest Arkansas would rally in the seventh inning against Unsworth loading the bases on a single, double and walk. Pinch-hitter Donnie Dewees tied the score on a groundout before Parker Morin 's single to center gave them the lead. They added an insurance run on a squeeze bunt by Carlos Diaz . Arkansas would get one back in the bottom of the inning on Ian Miller 's two out single but they would leave the tying and winning runs on base.
Corey Ray (5-4) was the winning pitcher for Northwest Arkansas going six innings and allowing just the one run while Jake Newberry closed it out for his league leading ninth save. Dylan Unsworth was responsible for all three of the Naturals runs in the seventh and took the loss dipping to 5-6 on the year.
Game two started as the inverse of game one but ended in similar fashion. Northwest Arkansas received the great start as Ashton Goudeau tossed five innings of shutout ball on only two hits. Meanwhile, the Naturals offense built a three-run lead scoring twice in the second inning on two out RBI hits from Logan Moon and Jose Sanchez . Then adding their other tally in the fifth on a two out hit from Corey Toups .
The Travelers would rally in the sixth against Naturals reliever Luis Rico scoring two times on three hits and a walk with Ian Miller and Tyler Marlette driving in the runs but the stranded the tying and go-ahead runs. In the seventh inning they would get the tying and winning runs aboard with none out but were unable to score as lefty Tim Hill closed it out with a groundout and then consecutive strikeouts with the tying run on third base.
Goudeau earned the win with his five shutout innings improving to 3-6 while Hill collected his second save. Brett Ash allowed three runs over five innings but dropped to 5-5 on the season.
Tuesday's game represents the start of the second half pennant chase as the Travelers and Naturals continue their series. Arkansas will send right-hander Tyler Herb (5-3, 3.61) to the mound opposite 21 year-old lefty Foster Griffin (3-1, 2.55). First pitch is at 7:10 and it is Baseball Bingo and a Zoosday Tuesday at the ballpark as well as ALZ night. The game will also be broadcast on the Sports Animal 920, the First Pitch App, TuneIn radio and milb.tv.
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Texas League Stories from June 20, 2017
- Quiala, Martin Push Hooks Past Missions - Corpus Christi Hooks
- Naturals Sweep Doubleheader to Close First Half - Arkansas Travelers
- Naturals Win Seventh Straight; Sweep Double-Header - Northwest Arkansas Naturals
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