COLUMBIA, SC - The first half of Columbia's season wrapped up on Sunday at Segra Park. While Mark Vientos recorded a pair of hits in the series finale against Lexington, the Legends completed the sweep and defeated the Fireflies, 10-1. Lexington finished a half-game ahead of Charleston in the first half, won the Southern Division and clinched a playoff spot.
While Vientos registered his 10th multi-hit game of the year, the rest of the Columbia (24-42) hitters did little else. Lexington's (37-32) pitchers held the Fireflies to just four hits.
After four scoreless innings, the Legends plated three in the fifth. Simeon Woods-Richardson (L, 1-7) had allowed just three base-runners over the first four but then walked back to back hitters in the fifth. Billy Oxford was called upon out of the bullpen. The first batter he faced, Michael Gigliotti, tripled and both runners scored. Bhret Bewley then knocked in Gigliotti with a ground ball to second base. Shervyen Newton fielded the bouncing ball and fired home, but the runner beat the throw. Lexington led, 3-0.
The visitors added three more the following frame. Jeison Guzman and Gigliotti both drove in runs. Guzman scored from third when the runner at first at the time, Gigliotti, stole second. The throw from behind the plate bounced into centerfield, allowing Guzman to score.
Columbia loaded the bases in the seventh against starter Jon Heasley (W, 6-3) and reliever Austin Lambright (who replaced Heasley after the first two hitters reached). Newton then walked to load the bases. With Brian Sharp batting, Lambright threw a pitch away to the screen which enabled Vientos to score from third. The bases loaded again later in the inning with no outs, but the home team couldn't push any more runs across.
The Legends distanced themselves from the Fireflies with two runs in eighth and ninth innings. Gigliotti wound up with three hits and four RBIs on the day for Lexington.
Columbia ends the first half with a 24-42 mark. The Fireflies are off for the all-star break from June 17-19 but return to action on Thursday in Asheville. Columbia faces the Tourists from Thursday to Sunday before continuing to Lexington for a three-game series from June 24-26.
Fireflies shortstop Ronny Mauricio will play in the 60th South Atlantic League All-Star Game on Tuesday, June 18, in Charleston, West Virginia. You can listen to the game on wvpower.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.