KINSTON, N.C. (DEWDS) – Kris Bubic fired seven scoreless innings as the Wilmington Blue Rocks blanked the Down East Wood Ducks, 5-0, Saturday night at Grainger Stadium.
The Wood Ducks have been shutout just five times this season.
Down East (22-14, 72-34) suffers just their fifth shutout loss of the season, but their third in the last two weeks.
Wilmington (19-17, 63-42) jumped on the board early against Alex Eubanks. Kyle Kasser led off the ballgame with a single to left, and then Blake Perkins followed with an RBI double to left-center to put the Blue Rocks on the board first. After another single from Kyle Isbel, Dennicher Carrasco came through with a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.
Wilmington doubled their lead in the fourth inning on a two-run home run from M.J. Melendez, after Carasco singled to begin the inning. It was Melendez’ seventh of the season, and made it 4-0 Wilmington.
Eubanks (loss, 8-4) suffered his second consecutive loss, giving up four runs on eight hits over five innings. He walked one and struck out four.
Kris Bubic (win, 4-2) was excellent for Wilmington. He fired seven scoreless innings, allowing just a walk and five hits, while striking out seven. The Woodies only threatened to score twice against him in the contest. Sherten Apostel doubled in the second inning to put two in scoring position with two out, but a ground ball ended the inning. Then in the fifth, Eric Jenkins reached on a bunt single to put two on base, but he was picked off to squash the rally.
Wilmington got one more run in the eighth inning, when Colby Shultz doubled off of Josh Advocate to lead off the frame, and two batters later, Kasser came through with an RBI single.
Robert Garcia retried all six batters he faced for Wilmington out of the bullpen to finish the contest, while Jefferson Medina and Joe Kuzia each worked a scoreless inning in relief for the Woodies.
The two teams will play the rubber game of the three-game series Sunday at 1 p.m. Right-hander Noah Bremer (1-0, 3.02) will make the start for Down East, opposed by Wilmington left-hander Austin Cox (2-2, 2.36). It’s Sunday Funday at Grainger stadium, with pregame autographs and postgame kids run the bases presented by Cricket Wireless. The broadcast will begin at 12:50 p.m. on 960AM The Bull, and online at 960thebul..com as well as on the MiLB First Pitch and TuneIn Radio Apps. For tickets and more information visit woodducksbaseball.com or call (252) 686-5172.