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SeaWolves Victorious on Messy Night in Altoona

September 10, 2021

The Erie SeaWolves came away with a win on a chaotic night at PNG Field in Altoona, knocking off the Altoona Curve 12-5. Erie held a 5-0 lead in the sixth inning, had allowed Altoona to tie the game, and then scored seven times in the ninth inning to re-secure

The Erie SeaWolves came away with a win on a chaotic night at PNG Field in Altoona, knocking off the Altoona Curve 12-5. Erie held a 5-0 lead in the sixth inning, had allowed Altoona to tie the game, and then scored seven times in the ninth inning to re-secure their win. Erie hit three home runs in the game, but only one of them actually left the park.

For the first time in six games, Erie kept their opponent off of the scoreboard in the first inning, thanks to a strong outing from Beau Brieske. The right-hander for Erie opened the night with five scoreless innings, but still let up a career-high eight hits over the course of the night. In the sixth inning, Brieske allowed three singles, and lost the shutout when Jack Suwinski used one of them to drive in a run. Gerson Moreno took over with two of the base runners aboard, and allowed one of them to score on a ground out by Josh Bissonette before ending the inning.

Moreno ran into issues with his location in the next inning, giving up a pair of singles and a walk before walking Suwinski to drive in a run. After the bases-loaded walk, Moreno was replaced by Cale Coshow, but Coshow allowed a single to Cal Mitchell that scored two runs and tied the game at five. Despite allowing the two inherited runners to score, Coshow (W, 5-1) closed the frame and pitched the eighth inning without allowing any other damage. Ruben Garcia tossed a scoreless ninth inning after Erie had retaken the lead to finish the night.

Erie’s early offense came in abnormal fashion. Daniel Cabrera opened the third inning by smacking a ball off of the batter’s eye in center field. While the ball was tipped on the ground by the right fielder, Cabrera was able to round the bases and score on the play, and it was ruled an inside-the-park home run. With a runner on base later in the inning, Drew Ward bounced a single to left field to drive in another run, but Altoona’s Canaan Smith-Njigba overran the grounder, letting the ball reach the outfield wall, and letting Ward score on the play with a single and a three-base error.

The oddities continued in the fourth inning when Eric De La Rosa lined a ball into the left field corner. Hooking into foul territory, the ball initially lodged into the fencing of the Erie bullpen, but Smith-Njigba still retrieved the ball before it was ruled dead. De La Rosa kept stride with the play, and easily scored the second inside-the-park home run of the game.

The first three runs of the night were plated against Altoona’s Travis MacGregor. Against Brad Case in the fifth inning, Drew Ward hit a traditional home run to center field to open the frame, putting Erie ahead 5-0. Case would settle to work into the ninth inning while Altoona eventually tied the game. After hitting the first batter of the frame, Erie attacked Case (L, 2-3) to retake the lead. Cabrera hit a double to drive in one run, and Dillon Dingler collected an RBI on a ground out to knock Case out of the game. Against Will Gardner, Erie added to their lead with a two-RBI double by Ward, an RBI single by Andrew Navigato, and an RBI triple by De La Rosa, finally capping the seven-run ninth. Two Erie batters came only one leg shy of a cycle at the end of the night, with Ward only needing a triple and De La Rosa only missing a single.

With the win, Erie takes the season series over Altoona, as the SeaWolves have already won 12 of the 23 scheduled meetings. Erie and Altoona continue their series on Saturday at PNG Field. First pitch from Altoona is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. Erie returns to UPMC Park for the final series of the season on Tuesday, September 14 to begin a series with the Richmond Flying Squirrels, with the first pitch scheduled for 6:05 p.m.