WILMINGTON, DE - In a night of firsts, the Wood Ducks (34-31, 58-76) swept the Blue Rocks (28-36, 67-67) in a doubleheader on Wednesday night. While game one featured the 11th shutout of the year, it was the 4-2 victory in game two that claimed the first four-game winning streak
WILMINGTON, DE - In a night of firsts, the Wood Ducks (34-31, 58-76) swept the Blue Rocks (28-36, 67-67) in a doubleheader on Wednesday night. While game one featured the 11th shutout of the year, it was the 4-2 victory in game two that claimed the first four-game winning streak for the Woodies on the season.
Down East's pitching staff held Wilmington to just 10 hits and two runs over the 14 innings of play. They also collected 16 strikeouts on the night, to further their league lead in K's for the month of August.
Wes Benjamin took control of the game early by not allowing a hit until the fourth inning. His ninth quality start also backed up his ninth win to lead the Woodies' staff.
The offense was late to arrive as well; it only had one at-bat with a runner in scoring position through five innings. In the sixth, a triple by Josh Morgan started the rally, but it wasn't until the second out was recorded for the Wood Ducks to take action.
Luis La O lunged for a base hit over short to bring home Morgan and put Down East on the board. He finished the doubleheader with three hits total to increase his batting average to .293 - second-best in the league.
Next, Carlos Garay ripped a double down the left field line and La O hustled all the around to score from first to mark the score at 2-0.
For the final frame, Adam Choplick was called for the save opportunity of the season. He struck out the side to seal the win and collect his ninth straight save.
Down East had to flip the script in game two with Wilmington's offense shooting out of the gates first. They score a two-out run in both the first and second innings off of starter Jonathan Hernández.
The offense was also slow to figure out Cristian Castillo for the Blue Rocks, with only one hit through three innings. In the fourth, the bats came alive for the Woodies.
Three straight hits from Yanio Perez, La O, and Garay produced the first run for the Woodies. Ti'Quan Forbes worked a walk to load the bases for LeDarious Clark. He lined a two-run single into left-center that gave the Wood Ducks the lead 3-2.
Chuck Moorman added one more two pitches later with a sacrifice fly to deep center field to score Forbes. With a 4-2 lead behind him, Hernandez did not allow a hit to the last nine batters he faced.
For the sixth and seventh, Jeffrey Springs entered for a six-out save. He struck out three on the night to earn his second save of the season for the Woodies.
After the game, the team learned the Astros lost in extra innings to the Pelicans which pushes the deficit to only 2.5 games back with five games to go.
Down East closes the series with Wilmington at 6:35 p.m. on Thursday. Right-hander Steven Bruce will face lefty Collin Rodgers in the finale from Frawley stadium. The Woodies will also know what they need to do in the game since Buies Creek plays at 11:00 a.m. tomorrow.