Wood Ducks Wallop Fayetteville To Salvage Finale
Fayetteville, N.C. - The Wood Ducks offense exploded Thursday in Fayetteville, as they plated 11 runs on 14 hits, on their way to an 11-1 victory over the Woodpeckers to salvage the finale of the three-game series.
The victory for the Wood Ducks (31-21, 81-41) was their largest winning margin this season, and second highest scoring output, trailing only their 12-run comeback win over Myrtle Beach on April 8.
Down East opened the scoring in the second. Yohel Pozo and Diosbel Arias led off with consecutive singles, and then Bubba Thompson was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Yanio Perez then came through with a sac fly to score one run, and Josh Altmann followed with an RBI single to make it 2-0.
The Wood Ducks then blew the game open against Shawn Dubin (loss, 3-5) in the third inning. Curtis Terry walked, and then Pozo singled, and then with two outs Sherten Apostel walked to load the bases. Perez then launched a grand slam to left field to clear the bases, and put the Wood Ducks ahead, 6-0. It was Perez' sixth home run this season, and the second grand slam by the Woodies as a team.
Dubin lasted just 2.2 innings, giving up six runs on five hits, he walked four, and struck out four. The Wood Ducks worked eight walks in the ballgame.
Terry then added on a run in the fourth on a solo home run to left field, his ninth with the Wood Ducks, and 24th of the season, to make it 7-0.
The offense kept on coming. In the sixth, Arias singled with one out, and Apostel reached on a two-out single. After Perez reached on an infield single to load the bases, Altman looped a two run single over shortstop to make it a 9-0 advantage.
Down East added on one more time in the seventh. Hasuan Viera worked a pinch-hit walk, and then Pozo followed with a single. Later in the inning, Thompson ripped a triple to the right-center gap, increasing the lead to 11-0.
The pitching was also outstanding. Scott Engler made the spot start for the Wood Ducks and tossed three scoreless innings, striking out five. He walked the first two batters he faced, but was able to strand both and set the tone for the ballgame. Cole Uvila (win, 5-3) followed with three scoreless innings, and struck out a career-high six in the process. Jefferson Medina (save, 5) fired the final three innings, and allowed the lone run of the ballgame. It came on a Miguelangel Sierra solo home run to break up the shutout in the ninth.
The Wood Ducks return home to face the Wilmington Blue Rocks in a three-game series beginning Friday night at 7 p.m. to kick off Kinston Indians throwback weekend. Right-hander Tim Bennan (4-1, 2.17) will make the start for the Wood Ducks, opposed by Blue Rocks lefty Rito Lugo (2-3, 2.31). The broadcast will begin at 6:50 p.m. on 960AM The Bull and online at 960thebull.com as well as on the MiLB First Pitch and TuneIn Radio App. It's Mother Earth Friday at Grainger Stadium with postgame fireworks presented by WNCT. For tickets and more information visit woodducksbaseball.com or call 252-686-5172.
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