MOOSIC, PA - The Durham Bulls defeated the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders 6-2 Thursday night at PNC Field, taking a 2-1 series lead in the Best-of-Five Governors' Cup Finals.
Highlighting the Durham victory was the performance of starting pitcher Brent Honeywell , who earned the victory by striking out 10 across six scoreless innings. The right-hander surrendered just five hits and walked only one, leading the Bulls to within one victory of the franchise's fifth Governors' Cup title.
Shane Peterson kicked off the scoring for the visitors, cracking a two-run homer to center field in the top of the second inning. Then in the fourth inning with runners on first and second, Justin Williams lined a single to center field. While rounding third base, Patrick Leonard slipped and fell, prompting Peterson to halt before reaching third base and retreat to second. The ensuing throw to second base to attempt to get Peterson out went to the outfield however, allowing Leonard to score for a 3-0 lead.
In the seventh the Bulls doubled their lead, beginning with a two-run double into the right field corner off the bat of Johnny Field . Three batters later Jake Bauers singled to center, scoring Field and giving the Bulls a 6-0 advantage.
The RailRiders would not go down without a fight though, scoring two runs in the bottom of the seventh on an RBI double by Mason Williams and a run-scoring groundout from Donovan Solano.
Five Bulls relievers combined to notch the final nine outs, as none of them threw more than 12 pitches. The final seven RailRiders that came to the plate were retired.
Bauers and Williams each tallied two hits in Durham's seven-hit attack, while seven starters reached base safely for the Bulls. Right-hander Chance Adams suffered the loss for the RailRiders, surrendering three runs (two earned) on three hits across four innings.
The Bulls will aim to clinch the Governors' Cup title Friday night at PNC Field at 6:35 p.m. in Game Four. RHP Burch Smith will take the mound for the Bulls, while RHP Brady Lail will start for Scranton/WB.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.