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Twins rally to even Appy Finals09/03/2006 5:30 PM ET
By Marc Jimenez / Special to MLB.com
Daniel Valencia went 4-for-4 with a homer as Elizabethton rallied for a 5-4 victory over visiting Danville on Sunday to force a decisive game in the Appalachian League Championship Series.
The defending champion Twins, who suffered a series-opening 5-2 loss on Saturday, appeared headed for elimination in the best-of-3 series after falling behind 4-0 in the top of the second inning.
But Valencia singled and scored in the bottom of the frame, delivered an RBI single in the third and homered to spark a three-run fifth as Elizabethton survived to force a third game with Danville for the second straight year.
The Twins (1-1) are seeking their eighth Appy title while the Braves (1-1) are still chasing their first.
Josh Land and J.W. Wilson followed Valencia's blast with RBI singles in the fifth, pushing Elizabethton ahead to stay, 5-4.
Gregory Yersich went 3-for-4 with a run scored, while Land and Danny Santiesteban each finished with two hits for the Twins.
Matthew Williams (1-0) picked up the win in relief, scattering two hits and striking out four over 4 2/3 scoreless innings. Danny Hernandez pitched a scoreless seventh for the save. Starter Jose Lugo lasted just 1 1/3 frames, giving up four runs on eight hits and a walk.
Danny Brezeale drilled a two-run double and scored on Concepcion Rodriguez's groundout in the second. Willie Cabrera added an RBI single later in the inning as the Braves opened a four-run cushion.
Brezeale, Phillip Britton and Larry Williams each had two of Danville's 11 hits.
Braves starter Thomas Hanson allowed a run on two hits and three walks with two strikeouts in 1 2/3 innings. Jorge Acosta yielded two runs on five hits over 2 2/3 frames before James Curtis (0-1) surrendered two runs on six hits over the final 1 2/3 innings for the loss.
Game 3 follows Game 2 as part of a doubleheader.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.