Pensacola, FL - Eyeing down the chance at a series sweep, the Biloxi Shuckers (84-57, 2-1) fell a run shy at Blue Wahoos Stadium on Friday night, dropping game three of the South Division Championship Series to the Pensacola Blue Wahoos (77-65, 1-2) 3-2. Trailing early, Biloxi managed to even the contest at 2-2 before Pensacola gathered a second lead and pitched their way to the finish.
Bowden Francis (L, 0-1) walked three and stranded three over his first two innings on the mound but surrendered a solo home run to Alex Kirilloff to begin the third, as Pensacola jumped to a 1-0 lead. The right-field blast was Kirilloff's third of the series, homering for a third straight game.
Ryan Costello tagged Francis for another home run in the fourth, going deep off the center field batter's eye and pushing the lead to 2-0. Biloxi's offense stalled out of the gate against Jordan Balazovic in his Double-A debut, not reaching base via hit until Bruce Caldwell singled to open the fifth. Jake Gatewood and Mario Feliciano followed with singles as three straight knocks loaded the bases against the Blue Wahoos right-hander. Joantgel Segovia then popped a sacrifice fly to open the scoring and Alexander Alvarez tied the game with a sacrifice bunt down the first-base line, scoring Gatewood.
Promptly responding against Francis in the fifth, Royce Lewis reached with a lead-off single and advanced to second on a groundout by Trevor Larnach. With two outs, Travis Blankenhorn bounced a single through the right side to score Lewis and give Pensacola the outright 3-2 advantage.
Dakota Chalmers (W, 1-0) halted any chance of a comeback, not allowing a hit over 3.1 scoreless innings and working through the eighth. In the ninth, Anthony Vizcaya (S, 1) allowed a one-out single to Gatewood, but proceeded to strikeout Feliciano and Segovia to end the game.
Leading 2-1 in their best-of-five series, the Shuckers now return to Biloxi and MGM Park for Game Four of their matchup with the Blue Wahoos on Saturday night at 6:35 pm. Biloxi will throw RHP Drew Rasmussen while the Blue Wahoos will counter with RHP Bailey Ober. The game can be heard locally in Biloxi on Cruisin' WGCM AM 1240/100.9 FM, TuneIn Radio or the MiLB First Pitch App and can be seen on MiLB.TV.
With the 2020 Southern League schedule announced, Shuck Nation Memberships for the 2020 season are available by calling 228-233-3465 or by visiting the Biloxi Shuckers front office.
ABOUT THE BILOXI SHUCKERS:
The Biloxi Shuckers are the Double-A Affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers. The Shuckers play at MGM Park in Biloxi, Mississippi. For more information please visit biloxishuckers.com and follow us on Twitter @biloxishuckers and at facebook.com/biloxishuckers.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.