DURHAM, NC - In front of 10,882 fans on Star Wars Night, the Durham Bulls fell to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders 3-2, dropping their third straight game Saturday at the DBAP.
Durham (20-17) opened the scoring in the bottom of the first inning, as after Taylor Motter led off the game with a single, the rehabbing Nick Franklin followed with a two-run home run to center for a 2-0 advantage.
That lead held until the fifth, when former Bull Cole Figueroa doubled home Nick Noonan to cut the deficit to 2-1. Then in the sixth the RailRiders (19-18) struck again, as Kyle Roller hit a two-run home run over the centerfield fence to put the visitors in front 3-2.
That would close the scoring, as the Bulls were able to get the tying run aboard in the ninth, but a double play ended the contest and handed the home side its third straight defeat.
Joel De La Cruz (3-0) earned the victory, surrendering two runs on five hits in five innings, before Caleb Cotham tossed three scoreless innings out of the bullpen and Mark Montgomery earned his first save of the season by facing the minimum three batters in the ninth. Dylan Floro (3-4) took the loss for the Bulls, despite allowing just three runs across seven innings. Right-handers Preston Guilmet and Jhan Mariñez each tossed a scoreless inning out of the bullpen for Durham.
The Bulls try to avoid the series sweep Sunday afternoon, when they send LHP Everett Teaford (2-2, 5.70) to the hill, while the RailRiders have yet to name a starter. First pitch is scheduled for 1:05 p.m.