HAGERSTOWN, MD - The Fireflies picked up not just one, but two wins on Sunday at Municipal Stadium. First, Columbia finished Saturday's suspended game, broke a 2-2 tie in the eighth, and soared past Hagerstown, 3-2. Then to top it off, the Fireflies won the second game of the series shortly afterword, by a score of 6-4.
Mark Vientos had quite a day in leading the Fireflies to two victories. First, Vientos drove in the go-ahead run in clutch manner in the eighth inning of the first game. Columbia (18-25, 42-67) had been tied with the Suns, 2-2, since the game was suspended due to rain dating back to Saturday evening. Vientos wasted little time getting his club back ahead when it was restarted Sunday afternoon.
Then Vientos proceeded to single, double and triple in the second game, his triple driving in a pivotal run in the seventh inning. The Fireflies started that frame tied as well with Hagerstown (20-22, 50-62), 4-4. Vientos and the Fireflies left the inning with a lead it wouldn't relinquish.
Danny Hrbek (W, 2-0), picked up his second win of the season and Allan Winans (S, 9), then shut the door with another four-out save. Winans is 9-for-9 in save chances this year.
Vientos and Ronny Mauricio couldn't be stopped on Sunday. In the second game, the pair combined for five hits and four RBI. Columbia received contributions offensively from several unlikely suspects as well. Walter Rasquin knocked in a run in the 6-4 win and Guillermo Granadillo scored twice. The outfielder finished with a single and a triple hitting out of the nine slot.
Phil Capra also singled and scored in his Fireflies debut.
After both teams plated runs in the third, Columbia used a big fifth inning to pull ahead of the Suns. In total, the Fireflies tallied three runs and five hits. Capra led off with a single through the left side of the diamond and then scooted to second on Granadillo's sacrifice bunt. That's what started the string of base knocks. Rasquin plated Capra with a single up the middle. Mauricio then ripped a base hit of his own.
Runners were at the corners for Vientos. The Mets prospect clocked a double and scored Rasquin. The Fireflies pulled ahead, 3-1, but the visitors weren't done. With Mauricio at third, Chase Chambers smashed a fly ball to deep center. The sacrifice fly enabled Mauricio to tag and score and Columbia led by three.
It soon felt like déjà vu all over again in the sixth. Last weekend, the Fireflies blew two leads in two separate games to Hagerstown and wound up losing both contests. The Suns did it again with a three-run sixth. It started with Israel Pineda's solo homer to dead centerfield and it continued with four straight singles. Reliever Danny Hrbek soon worked out of the jam, but the sixth came to a close with the score tied, 4-4.
The Fireflies showed amazing poise and punched right back in the seventh. Mauricio and Vientos went back to work and each knocked in a run to give Columbia a 6-4 advantage. Vientos had the loudest blast with a triple down the right-field line.
When the suspended game restarted earlier in the day, Justin Lasko (W, 1-0) found himself on the slope. The former UMass Minuteman hurled three scoreless - and hitless - innings of work and collected his first professional win. He was especially clutch on the mound after Columbia took a 3-2 lead in the eighth.
The series continues on Monday at 7:05 ET. Right-hander Jose Butto (4-9, 3.78) is scheduled to face Suns righty Tomas Alstre (4-10, 6.19). All the action can be heard at FirefliesLiveStream.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.