Harrisburg, PA - The Harrisburg Senators jumped ahead early and never trailed, as they defeated the Erie SeaWolves 5-1 to clinch the Western Division Championship Series in four games. They advance to the Eastern League Championship Series for the first time since 2002 and will face the Trenton Thunder beginning Tuesday night in New Jersey.
Steven Souza, Jr. led the way offensively with a 4-for-4 night, including three doubles, two RBIs, and two runs scored. He also stole a pair of bases.
The Senators scored a couple of runs in the opening inning. After Brian Goodwin beat out an infield single with one out, Souza delivered an RBI double to the gap in right center field, scoring Goodwin from first base. A couple batters later, Ricky Hague came through with an RBI single to bring home Souza.
Harrisburg tacked on another in the second on an RBI double by Jason Martinson off the fence in right. Erie answered back with a run in the fourth, when Daniel Fields brought home Eugenio Suarez from first base with a double into left center.
The Senators added two more runs in the seventh, on another RBI double by Souza and a run-scoring single by Justin Bloxom.
Robbie Ray tossed six and two-thirds strong innings and allowed just three hits and a run. The left-hander walked two and struck out six. Neil Holland (a third of an inning) and Richie Mirowski (two innings) closed out the game for the Senators in relief. Erie recorded just three hits in the game. Harrisburg's pitching staff allowed only six earned runs to the SeaWolves in the series.
On Tuesday, the Senators open the best-of-five Eastern League Championship Series in Trenton. Game time is 7:05 p.m. and the game can be heard on 1460am The Ticket, on the Internet through the Senators website, and it's available through iHeart Radio beginning with the pregame show at 6:45 p.m.