KINSTON, N.C. (DEWDS) – Down East takes the suspended game, while its comeback falls short against Salem in the nightcap.
Final: Down East 8, Salem 7
Win: Sal Mendez (4-0)
Loss: Dylan Thompson (1-5)
Save: Joe Kuzia (6)
The Red Sox struck first in the third inning, as Charlie Madden doubled to center, and one batter later Tanner Nishioka singled him home with another base hit to center.
The Wood Ducks responded in the bottom half of the inning when Diosbel Arias worked a one-out walk to tie the game at 1-1.
The Woodies then jumped ahead with a four-run fourth inning. With two outs, Down East strung together six consecutive hits, with Yonny Hernandez, Ryan Dorow, and Arias collecting the RBIs.
Dylan Thompson (loss, 1-5) went on to allow five runs on 11 hits over 3.2 innings of work.
Sal Mendez (win, 4-0) gave up four runs on ten hits, did not walk a batter, and struck out three.
Salem pulled within a run twice, in both the sixth and seventh innings, but Joe Kuzia (save, 6) recorded the final six outs to close the game out.
Final/7: Salem 4, Down East 3
Win: Jhonathan Diaz (3-6)
Loss: Josh Advocate (3-2)
Save: Andrew Schwaab (2)
Marcus Wilson led the Red Sox, homering in the second to open up the lead, and then driving in a run with a single in the third, and walking and scoring in the sixth to add on insurance and go ahead, 4-0.
Jhonathan Diaz (win, 3-6) was excellent for Salem, going six scoreless innings, giving up just two hits and three walks, while striking out eight.
Trailing by four entering the ninth the Woodies pieced together a comeback, working three walks and two hits against Zach Schellenger. Ryan Dorow lined a two-run single to right to cut the deficit to 4-3, but Andrew Schwaab (save, 2) came out of the bullpen to get Diosbel Arias on strikes to preserve the win.
Josh Advocate (loss, 3-2) started for the Woodies giving up two runs in two innings. Francisco Villegas gave up a pair of runs over 3.2 in relief, while Scott Engler struck out four, in 1.1 scoreless innings out of the bullpen.
The series continues Saturday when the Wood Ducks send lefty Jake Latz (5-1, 1.72) to the mound to face off with Salem righty Bryan Mata (2-1, 1.56). First pitch is set for 6 p.m., and it’s 80s weekend at Grainger Stadium, where the first 1,000 fans in attendance will receive a Wood Ducks fanny pack presented by Chris Humphries of Allstate. The broadcast will begin at 5:50 p.m. on 960AM The Bull, and online at 960thebull.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.