Potomac bats around in 5th, defeats Hillcats, 8-3
LYNCHBURG, Va. (Lynchburg Hillcats) – The Lynchburg Hillcats had a 2-0 lead after three innings, but the Potomac Nationals scored eight unanswered runs to win, 8-3, for the second straight night in front of 3,461 fans at City Stadium.
The Nationals (13-10) sent ten men to the plate in the fifth inning and scored five runs. The Hillcats (12-10) dropped back-to-back games for the first time since April 9 and 10..
Rhett Wiseman blasted a three-run home run to cap the five-run fifth off of Hillcats starter Jake Paulson (Loss, 2-2). Jake Noll plated a run earlier in the inning on a fielder's choice and Ian Sagdol ripped an RBI single.
The Hillcats got on the board early. Mitch Longo led off the first inning with a double to right-center field, extending his hitting streak to 13 straight games, the longest in the Carolina League this season. Following a wild pitch, Jodd Carter lifted a sacrifice fly to center field to make it 1-0. Conner Capel was next up, and he launched a pitch from Potomac starter joan Baez out of the yard, just inside the right field foul pole, to make it 2-0 Lynchburg.
Potomac manager Tripp Keister was ejected on the play, as he argued that Capel’s blast had hooked foul.
The Nationals evened the score in the fourth against Paulson. Carter Kieboom led off the inning with a single up the middle, and came all the way around to score on a double by Juan Soto one batter later. Tres Barerra added a run later in the inning with an RBI single up the middle to plate Soto, tying the game, 2-2.
Paulson worked 4.2 innings, gave up 11 hits, seven earned runs, and walked three, while also recording three strikeouts.
Potomac added an unearned run in the sixth against Billy Strode. It was Soto who came through again with another RBI, singling to score Kieboom.
The Hillcats threatened with a rally in the eighth inning when they strung together three straight two-out hits, culminating with an Emmanuel Tapia RBI single to bring home Capel. However, Tapia was thrown out attempting to advance to second base on the play, putting the end to the rally, in an 8-3 final.
The two teams will face off in the series finale on Sunday at 2 p.m. at City Stadium. Right hander Tyler Mapes (3-0, 2.05) will get the start for Potomac, opposed by Hillcats left-hander Sam Hentges (2-0, 2.29).