AKRON, OH - Richmond natives Will Roberts and Jake Lowery helped the Akron Aeros (53-54) claim a, 7-4, victory over the Richmond Flying Squirrels (49-58) on Saturday night at Canal Park. Roberts earned the win, while Lowery went 2-for-4 with two runs scored and two RBIs.
Roberts (7-7) held off the Squirrels through the first seven innings. He departed to the win after 7 1/3 innings, leaving behind two runners for right-hander Austin Adams. They both scored and were the only runs charged to Roberts on the night. He conceded just five hits, walked one and struck out four.
The Aeros jumped on Richmond right-hander Craig Westcott in the second inning. Jesus Aguilar started the uprising with a single into left field. Westcott then walked Carlos Moncrief and Tyler Holt singled to load the bases with nobody out. Westcott recorded the first out of the inning, but Jake Lowery notched a two-run single to give Akron their first lead, 2-0. Matt Lawson made it 3-0 with a sacrifice fly and Francisco Lindor capped the inning with an RBI single through the left-side of the infield.
Westcott worked a scoreless third inning, but ran into more trouble in the fourth inning. The trouble started when right fielder Jarrett Parker played a line drive from Lowery into a triple. Lawson followed with an RBI single. An out later, Ronny Rodriguez and Cedric Hunter delivered back-to-back run-scoring singles for a 7-0 lead.
Westcott (4-10) departed after the inning to the loss. He was charged with a season-high seven earned runs on 10 hits. He walked one and didn't strike out a batter. The Squirrels lost for the 17th time in his 21 starts.
The Squirrels were dormant until Adams entered for Roberts in the eighth inning. He did so with runners at the corners and one out. Adams fanned Ryan Lollis for the second out, but Joe Panik was able to bounce a single back through the middle to put the Squirrels on the board. Javier Herrera followed with a two-run double to the left-field corner. Andrew Susac then singled into left-center to complete a four-run inning. Akron's lead was reduced to three runs heading to the ninth inning, 7-4.
Right-hander Jose Flores made sure the Squirrels got no closer. He came on to work a perfect ninth inning, striking out Kelby Tomlinson to end the ballgame. Flores earned his 11th save of the season in his league-leading 44th appearance.
The finale of the four-game series is scheduled for 2:05 p.m. on Sunday afternoon at Canal Park. Richmond LHP Edwin Escobar (1-2, 4.32) will make the start against Akron RHP Paolo Espino (2-4, 6.03). The Flying Squirrels Pregame Warmup will begin at 1:35 p.m. on Sports Radio 910, SportsRadio910.com and IHeart Radio.