Woodies fend off Mudcats, 5-4

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ZEBULON, N.C. (DEWDS) – The Down East Wood Ducks struck for five runs in the first two innings, and Joe Kuzia was able to slam the door shut late, to secure a 5-4 win over the Carolina Mudcats Monday at Five County Stadium.

Down East (2-3, 52-23) improves to 18-8 in one-run games this season, and snap their three-game losing streak.

The Woodies took the lead early, sending eight men to the plate in the first inning. Ryan Dorow reached with a one-out single, and after advancing to second on a groundout, and to third on a wild pitch, Yanio Perez then worked a walk to put runners at the corners. The Woodies then put on a double steal with Dorow sliding safely into home for the game’s first run. Sam Huff then doubled home Perez, and later in the inning, Julio Pablo Martinez lined a single through the right side to increase the lead to 3-0.

The Wood Ducks added on more in the second. Tyler Depreta-Johnson led off with a single, and Dorow was hit by a pitch to put two aboard. Perez then doubled inside the first base bag against Christian Taugner to push the lead to 5-0.

Taugner (loss, 2-5) worked 3.2 innings, giving up five runs on six hits, he walked three and struck out four.

Collin Wiles made the start for the Woodies, his first since April 25, 2018. He faced the minimum through three innings, rolling a pair of double play balls. In the fourth the Mudcats broke up the shutout. Rob Henry led off with a single, and then Ryan Aguilar and Tristen Lutz followed with walks to load the bases. Mario Feliciano singled home a run, and then Peyton Henry grounded into a double play to bring a run home to make it 5-2.

Wiles (win, 1-0) worked five innings, giving up two runs on four hits, he walked two and struck out seven.

Carolina tacked on a pair of runs again in the sixth against Scott Engler. Rob Henry reached third on a pair of errors to lead off the frame, and after an infield single from Lutz, Feliciano again came through with an RBI single. Later in the frame Zach Clark walked with the bases loaded to push across a run, and make it 5-4.

Kuzia (save, 7) came on to pick up the save, recording the final six outs of the game. He extended his scoreless streak to 18 consecutive innings in the process.

The Woodies and Mudcats play game two of their three-game series Tuesday at 7 p.m. Righty Alex Eubanks (5-2, 2.98) will make the start for the Woodies, while Carolina has yet to name a starter for the contest. The pregame show will begin at 6:50 p.m. on 960AM The Bull and online on 960thebull.com as well as on the MiLB First Pitch and TuneIn Radio Apps.