ELIZABETHTON, TENN.- The Burlington Royals took their second series win of the season over the Appalachian League West Division-leading Elizabethton Twins, beating the Twins 4-3 on Saturday evening at O'Brien Field.
DH Benji Cash was the hero for Burlington (20-23) in the win, hitting a ninth inning solo home run to snap a 3-3 tie. The blast was Cash's second of the season, and second in a four-game span for Burlington.
Elizabethton (27-16) scored first with a second-inning run. 1B Kolton Kendrick hit a leadoff double, and advanced to third on a single by LF Matt Albanese . Kendrick would come in and score on a double play ball off the bat of RF Colton Waltner .
The answer came quickly from the Royals. In the top of the third, 2B Oliver Nunez singled, and immediately scored on an RBI triple by CF Michael Gigliotti . The triple, Gigliotti's third of the season, was his first since June 26 at Bluefield.
LHP Michael Messier pitched well for the Royals, striking out six over 5.1 innings, and putting three consecutive zeroes on the board after the second-inning run. However, Elizabethton would push a second run across off of Messier in the sixth. 2B Carson Crites hit a leadoff single, and a double from CF Akil Baddoo put two runners in scoring position. 3B Andrew Bechtold walked to load the bases. DH Jose Miranda grounded into a force out that retired Crites but kept the bases loaded. The next hitter, Kendrick, drew a walk to put the Twins up 2-1.
In the top of the seventh, the Royals grabbed their first lead of the night. SS Jeison Guzman drew a leadoff walk, and Cash walked behind him. With two out, Gigliotti laced a two-RBI double, allowing both runners to score and putting Burlington ahead 3-2.
In the home half of the frame, Crites and Baddoo hit consecutive doubles, tying the game.
The score would hold at 3-3 into the ninth, when Cash provided his heroics. In the bottom of the inning, RHP Tyler Zuber worked around two singles to strike out the side and preserve the win.
Gigliotti had two of the Royals' six hits in the game, and three of the four RBI.
Burlington will open a new series Sunday at 6:00 p.m. when they visit the Greeneville Astros at Pioneer Park. The game can be heard at www.greenevilleastros.com.
Burlington will return home on Wednesday, August 9 to face the Pulaski Yankees at 7:00 p.m. It will be Reader Appreciation Night! Children who complete the Alamance County Public Libraries and B-Royals' Reading Program will be celebrated with an on-field parade before the game. The game is the start of a season-long seven-game homestand. The homestand will feature a Thirsty Thursday, a Fireworks Saturday, and a Dollar Monday! For tickets, call (336) 222-0223 or visit www.burlingtonroyals.com.
Burlington 4, Elizabethton 3
WP: Collin Snider (3-0)
LP: Jose Martinez (4-1)
SV: Tyler Zuber (4)
HR: BUR- Benji Cash (2)
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.