Mudcats fall in extras to the Hillcats, 7-6
Lynchburg, Va. – Matt Weaver’s third hit of the night proved to be a knockout blow as the Lynchburg Hillcats edged the Carolina Mudcats 7-6 in 11 innings on Friday night at Calvin Falwell Field inside City Stadium. The game was Carolina’s fifth in the last seven games decided by one run.
The Mudcats drop to 14-27 on the season, and 0-5 against the Hillcats. Lynchburg improves to 22-17 with the comeback.
Tied 6-6 entering the last of the 11th, the Hillcats recorded three straight singles off reliever Grant Sides (2-1) to score the win. David Rohm began the rally with a bloop hit to left. Kyle Kubitza laced a grounder into right field, and moved Rohm to third. With the infield in, Matt Weaver stroked a soft flare into shallow right to bring home the final tally.
John Cornely (1-0) earned the win by tossing two scoreless frames in the extra innings. Cornely held the Mudcats without a hit while walking one, and striking out two.
Lynchburg scored four unanswered to claim victory. Their comeback started in the eighth inning. Trailing 6-3, William Beckwith mashed a mammoth, two-run homer off Owen Dew that went over the right field wall. The shot cut Carolina’s lead to one.
Against Enosil Tejeda in the ninth, Kubitza drew a leadoff walk. He raced to third when Tejeda’s throw off a bunt attempt by Weaver sailed into right field. Elmer Reyes’ sac-fly scored Kubitza to tie the game.
The comeback spoiled a great offensive performance for the Mudcats, and a nice start by Shawn Morimando. The left-hander hurled six innings, allowing three runs on six hits. He fanned four without a walk.
Tyler Naquin extended his hitting streak to nine with a 2-for-3 night. The center fielder reached base five times on a double, single and three walks. He scored two runs, and plated one in the fifth. Naquin has reached in six of his last nine plate appearances.
Francisco Lindor extended his Carolina League-leading on-base streak to 25 games with a single and walk. Charlie Valerio plated two runs with a pair of doubles. In all, the Mudcats totaled 10 hits and 11 bases on balls as every hitter reached in the loss.
The Mudcats continue their series at Lynchburg on Saturday night. First pitch against the Hillcats is set for 6:05 p.m.