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Richardson, Smith Lead Aviators

July 8, 2007 - American Association (AA) - Coastal Bend Aviators News Release

TJ Hendricks made his debut with the Coastal Bend Aviators Sunday at the expense of his former team, the Shreveport Sports. Just signed to the club this weekend, Hendricks went 7 innings allowing just 2 runs on 8 hits to help the Aviators win the rubber game of a three game series 7-2.

Leading off the fourth inning Grant Richardson put the Aviators on the board first when he hit his 6th homerun of the season to left center. He now leads the team with 41 runs batted in and is tied for the team lead in homeruns. In the fifth, Brian Fryer was hit on the hand and advanced to second when Sports starter Bert Snow uncorked a wild pitch. After a groundout, Richardson walked to put men on first and third. Bryon Smith then singled past the second baseman to bring Fryer home and give Coastal Bend a 2-0 lead.

The Sports tied the game with two in the bottom of the sixth after two were out before the Aviators blew it open in the top of the seventh with 4 runs on 4 hits. Phillip Grau walked and advanced to second on a wild pitch. James Lofton singled to put men on the corners before Richardson singled to center to bring in Grau and recapture the lead 3-2.

After Grant Wilson came on in relief of Snow, Smith got his third hit of the ballgame by doubling off the left field wall. Lofton scored on the play for a 4-2 Aviator lead. The next batter, JD Foust, was hit by a pitch to load the bases for Matt Spencer. He scored Richardson on a groundout before Will Lewis singled home Smith to give Coastal Bend a 6-2 advantage.

In the eighth Richardson's double scored Grau to make it a 7-2 game. He would finish the game 3 for 4 with a single, double, and HR with 2 runs scored and 3 RBI. Smith finished 3 for 5 with a run scored and 3 RBI as well. Tim Haines amd Jonathan Hunton eached pitched a scoreless inning to finish the game and give Coastal Bend a 2-1 series victory.

With the win, Hendricks improves to 3-5 on the season. Snow falls to 3-3. The Aviators remain in first place in the South Division with 5 wins and 1 loss. They return home tonight to open a three game set against the Fort Worth Cats Monday night at 7:05. Tickets start at just $5 and can be purchased online or by calling 387-8585. The game can be heard locally on KOPY 1070 AM and online.

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