High Point 4, Staten Island 3
HIGH POINT, N.C. – High Point’s Ben Aklinski was the man of the hour for the second time in 48 hours.
After lining a single to the leftfield wall to give the High Point Rockers a 3-2 walk-off win over Staten Island on Friday, Aklinski went one step further on Sunday, sending a two-run homer over the leftfield wall to give the Rockers a 4-3 walk-off victory on Sunday.
The High Point win, coupled with a loss by the Gastonia Honey Hunters, puts the Rockers in first place in the Atlantic League’s South Division for the first time this season.
The Rockers wound up sweeping all three games from Staten Island with walk-off wins.
“He put us on his shoulders this weekend. He’s playing outstanding,” said Rockers manger Jamie Keefe of Aklinski. “We swung the bats okay. Craig Stem kept us in the ballgame and the bullpen kept us in the ballgame. Anytime you can get the tying run or the winning run to the plate, anything can happen.”
Stem, High Point’s starting pitcher, went seven innings and held the FerryHawks to six hits and three runs while striking out three. He left the game trailing 3-2 and turned it over to lefties Bryce Hensley and Adam Choplick who shutout the ‘Hawks over the final two frames.
The Rockers entered the ninth inning trailing 3-2. Staten Island, in its first year of existence, is yet to win a road game. However, they were three outs away before the fireworks started. High Point catcher Chris Proctor coaxed a 3-2 count into an inning-starting walk. Reliever Chris Nunn then struck out Giovanny Alfonzo and Jay Gonzalez. Aklinski came to the plate to face new reliever Victor Capellan and hit the 0-1 pitch for the game-winning home run.
The two clubs matched runs in the second inning. Staten Island went up 1-0 on a double by Kacy Clemens and a sac fly from Ben Ruta. The Rockers knotted the game in the bottom half with a walk to Zander Wiel and an RBI double from Jerry Downs.
High Point took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the third. Alfonzo led off the inning with a walk, moved to second on a sac bunt by Gonzalez and scored on a double by Aklinski. It was Aklinski’s league-leading 12th double of the year.
The FerryHawks touched Stem for two runs in the top of the seventh to take a 3-2 lead. Clemens singled to start the inning and moved to third on a double by Ben Ruta. Mariel Bautista followed with a two-run single to give the FerryHawks their first lead of the game.
The Rockers will have Monday off before heading to Charleston, W.Va. for a three-game series with the Dirty Birds starting on Tuesday night.
Lexington 4, York 1
(May 22, 2022 – York, Pa.): The York Revolution offense was plagued by leaving runners on base in Sunday’s series finale, denied of a sweep against the Lexington Legends with a 4-1 loss at PeoplesBank Park.
After a good first inning from starter Eduardo Rivera, the Legends were able to get to him in the second inning when Montrell Marshall unloaded his second longball of the year, a two-run shot clearing the edge of the Arch Nemesis toward left-center for a 2-0 Lexington lead.
Connor Lien led off the bottom of the second inning with his first Revs base hit, and came around to score on a two-out base hit to left from Troy Stokes Jr. to cut the York deficit in half at 2-1.
Courtney Hawkins gave an answer in the third, blasting his second longball of the series over the Nemesis, a solo homer to extend the lead to 3-1 on his league-leading 12th of the season. Hawkins would add another RBI in the fifth, poking a two-out, two-strike single through the left side, making it 4-1.
The Revs had an opportunity of their own in the bottom of the fifth, getting two aboard with one away. Carlos Franco lined a base hit into right field, but a perfect throw from right fielder Tillman Pugh cut down Elmer Reyes trying to score.
York threatened again in the seventh, with Reyes being hit by a pitch to start the inning and a one-out single by Nellie Rodriguez, but reliever Henry Owens followed with a strikeout and a pop out to end yet another threat, bringing the day's stranded runner total to 11 for the Revs through seven innings.
They would add to that total in the eighth, again placing two on with just one out, but Legends lefty Daniel Gibson followed with a pair of flyouts to left center field, making it 13 stranded through eight innings.
The Revs were faced with Lexington closer Austin Adams trailing by three in the ninth. After singles from Melky Mesa and Rodriguez to start the inning, back-to-back flyouts and a strikeout led to another frustrating frame that fizzled out as Lexington took the finale 4-1.
Despite generating just four hits, the Legends made those count, with three of the four producing runs. York out-hit Lexington 9-4 but totaled a season-high 15 left on base for the game.
The Revs cap a 3-3 homestand and have won two of their last three series, totaling a 5-4 record during that stretch.
York will kick off a weeklong road trip at Staten Island with a midweek series beginning Tuesday night. Alex Sanabia is set to take the mound in the opener at 6:30 p.m. Revs fans can catch the action live on SportsRadio 98.9 FM & 1350 WOYK, 989woyk.com, The New WOYK app, and the WOYK YouTube channel beginning at 6:10 p.m. with Darrell Henry on the call.
Long Island 7, Southern Maryland 6 (10)
(Central Islip, N.Y., May 22, 2022) – The Long Island Ducks defeated the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs 7-6 in 10 innings on Sunday afternoon in the final game of a three-game series at Regency Furniture Stadium.
The Ducks jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the second inning on Deibinson Romero’s solo home run to left field and Vladimir Frias’ RBI double down the left field line off Blue Crabs starter Mitch Lambson. A bloop single to right by Romero in the third plated Lew Ford, who doubled, to make it a 3-0 game.
Southern Maryland got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third on Austin Rei’s solo homer to left off Ducks starter Anderson DeLeon. However, another solo homer to left from Romero in the sixth pushed the Ducks lead back up to three at 4-1. An RBI double to right by David Harris in the sixth closed the gap to 4-2, but Vladimir Frias restored the three-run lead in the seventh with a solo homer to left.
It stayed that way until the bottom of the ninth when a two-out, pinch-hit, three-run homer by Raul Shah tied the game at five. Long Island took the lead back in the 10th on L.J. Mazzilli’s RBI double to right-center and Alejandro De Aza’s sac fly to right. Alex Crosby’s sac fly to right in the bottom of the 10th closed the gap to 7-6, but the Blue Crabs were stopped there.
Neither starter factored into the decision. DeLeon lasted five innings, allowing two runs on three hits and three walks with two strikeouts. Lambson pitched six and one-third innings, yielding five runs on 11 hits while striking out six. Sandy Baez (1-0) picked up the win despite allowing two unearned runs in the ninth. Dalton Geekie (0-1) took the loss, conceding two runs (one earned) on two hits and a walk in two-thirds of an inning. Chad Hockin collected his first save after recording the game’s final three outs.
Romero led the Flock with three hits, three RBIs, two runs and a walk. Frias also had three hits, driving in two runs and scoring once.
The Ducks return home on Tuesday to begin another three-game set with Southern Maryland. Game time is slated for 6:35 p.m., with the Fairfield Properties Ballpark gates opening at 5:35 (5:20 for full season ticket holders). It’s a Triple Play Tuesday at the ballpark! If the Ducks turn a triple play during the game, one lucky fan will win $25,000. Simply sign up prior to first pitch at the Ticket Kiosk on the main concourse to be eligible. Right-hander Brett Kennedy (2-1, 3.03) gets the start for the Ducks against Blue Crabs righty Eddie Butler (2-0, 4.62).
Kentucky 5, Lancaster 0
After scoring 29 runs on 37 hits over two nights, the Lancaster Barnstormers encountered entirely different conditions on Sunday afternoon.
Max Povse and a trio of relievers combined on a six-hit shutout as the host Wild Health Genomes downed the ‘Stormers, 5-0, to snap a four-game Lancaster road winning streak.
Povse (3-2) checked the Barnstormers on four hits over six innings while walking three and striking out seven. Lancaster came the closest to scoring in the top of the first. B.J. Boyd walked and stole second. Kelly Dugan also picked up a base on balls. With two outs, LeDarious Clark singled sharply into left. Teodoro Martinez, in his first action with the Genomes, fired home and cut down Boyd.
The Barnstormers had five other runners reach scoring position, but no one advanced beyond second.
Wild Health grabbed a 1-0 lead in the home second. Chris Shaw worked out a walk against Brent Teller (2-3) and moved to second on a single by Martinez. Samir Duenez grounded into a force play at second. Carlos Castro knocked home the first run with a sacrifice fly to left.
In the third, Anderson Miller drilled a leadoff double into the right field corner. Two outs later, Jimmy Paredes brought the run home with a lined single that just cleared a leaping try by second baseman Melvin Mercedes. Paredes delivered another RBI single in the fifth as the lead expanded to 3-0.
Castro knocked in his second run of the afternoon with a double to left in the bottom of the sixth. He scored on a triple inside the first base bag by Miller.
The Barnstormers head home to face the Gastonia Honey Hunters on Tuesday. Fans may tune into the Barnstormers YouTube Channel at 6:25.
NOTES: Clark’s single in the first extended his hitting streak to 15 games, five shy of the franchise record…Dugan had his ninth double of the season in the sixth, Lancaster’s only extra base hit of the day…He has 18 extra base hits in his last 20 games…Jake Hoover singled in the seventh, his eighth hit of the series…Augie Sylk pitched the seventh, his first reliever outing of the season…He is expected to start on Wednesday.
Charleston 8, Gastonia 1
The Gastonia Honey Hunters dropped the final game of the series against the Charleston Dirty Birds on Sunday afternoon at Caromont Health Park by an 8-1 final.
Kit Scheetz(4-0) pitched seven strong innings to earn his fourth win of the season. The Charleston left-hander struck out four batters, gave up one hit and kept Gastonia scoreless through seven innings.
Juan Perez and Scott Kelly were the offensive stars for Charleston(13-15), as Perez was a homer shy of a cycle in the game, while Kelly provided the death nail with a grand slam homer in the ninth to provide the final margin for Charleston.
John Anderson would take the loss for Gastonia(19-8), allowing two runs in six frames.
The Gastonia offense was held to two base hits in the contest.
Jake Skole had the lone highlight of the game for Gastonia, as he hit a pinch-hit homer to right to end the shutout. The sixth homer of the year for the Gastonia outfielder was his fourth of the homestand.
Gastonia will now embark on a seven-game road trip beginning on Tuesday, as the Honey Hunters will play against the Lancaster Barnstormers at 6:30pm. The game will be aired on WGNC am1450 and 101.1fm at 6:15pm with the pregame show. Brian Rushing will bring the call throughout the road trip.
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