Charleston, SC - The Augusta GreenJackets had chances to rally against the Charleston RiverDogs, but fell short on all of their opportunities in a 3-1 loss to the RiverDogs on Thursday night in the opener of a four-game series between the teams.
After falling behind early in each of their last three games, the GreenJackets grabbed a first-inning run thanks to Shawn Payne's leadoff double on the second pitch of the game. He moved to third on a groundout and scored on another groundout - with the RBI going to Devin Harris - to give Augusta a 1-0 lead.
The RiverDogs got to GreenJackets starter Paul Davis to tie the game in the third inning. After Davis retired the first six hitters of the game, Ali Castillo doubled to lead off the third inning and scored on Ben Gamel's sacrifice fly to tie the game at one. In the fourth, back-to-back singles by Rob Refsnyder and Casey Stevenson set up Castillo's sacrifice fly to put the RiverDogs on top 2-1.
Augusta had their best chance to tie the game in the sixth inning after Elliott Blair walked to lead off the inning and stole second. Jose Flores singled to center with two outs, but Gamel threw Blair out at the plate to end the inning and preserve Charleston's one-run lead.
In the eighth, Blair singled with one out and stole second to put the tying run in scoring position for the second time in three innings. Charleston reliever Nick Goody struck out back-to-back hitters to end the inning and strand Blair at second - the first two of what would be five consecutive strikeouts for Goody in his two-inning stint to earn the righty his fifth save of the year.
By the time Goody picked up the save by striking out the side in the ninth, Charleston had added to the lead on Saxon Butler's two-out, solo homer in the eighth that put the RiverDogs ahead 3-1.
After allowing a run in the first, Scottie Allen (4-7) settled down to dominate over the end of his five-inning stint. After Joe Staley doubled to lead off the second, Allen retired the final 11 hitters he faced. In five innings, Allen allowed a run on two hits while striking out four. Davis (5-7) allowed just two runs on four hits and a pair of walks while striking out three in the loss.
The GreenJackets saw their winning streak end at three games with the loss while Charleston broke a four-game losing skid with the win. Adalberto Mejia (8-7, 4.41) takes the mound in the second game of the series for the GreenJackets against Charleston's Bryan Mitchell (7-10, 5.03). First pitch from Charleston comes at 7:05 p.m. with radio coverage beginning at 6:50 p.m. on ESPN Radio 1340 AM and www.greenjacketsbaseball.com.
The GreenJackets return home for the season's final Thirsty Thursday on Thursday August 23rd as they open a four-game series with the Greensboro Grasshoppers. Single-game tickets for any GreenJackets home game are currently available by calling the GreenJackets front office at 706-922-WINS and online at www.greenjacketsbaseball.com.