ROME, GA - Columbia native Gene Cone has caught fire in the first two games of the series against Rome. Cone tallied two more hits on Saturday, but the Fireflies lost to the Braves, 10-0, at State Mutual Stadium. Cone recorded his second straight multi-hit game.
Cone and Columbia (68-68) recorded seven hits on Saturday, but none were extra-base hits. The Fireflies had a man in scoring position just twice.
Rome (72-65) plated a pair of runs in the second and third innings to take a quick 4-0 advantage. Bradley Keller knocked in a pair with a single in the second and Kevin Josephina drove in two with a double in the following frame.
Later in the fourth, Fireflies starter Jose C. Medina (L, 1-1) retired the first two batters of the frame, but Rome's offense wouldn't quit. Isranel Wilson tripled and scored moments later on Jordan Rodgers' single.
Medina allowed one more run in the sixth before being lifted for Keaton Aldridge . The Braves' largest offensive production came in the seventh inning. The frame consisted of three runs and three hits, and Rome extended its lead to 9-0.
The Braves weren't done in the eighth. Carlos Martinez began the inning with a walk and moved up to second base when Lucas Herbert reached on an error. Josephina singled two batters later and scored Martinez. That was the end to Josephina's electric night: the switch-hitter finished 5-for-5 at the plate with four RBIs.
Jeremy Walker (W, 7-11) flummoxed Columbia hitters over five innings and Taylor Lewis (S, 4) finished the job with four scoreless frames out of the bullpen.
The penultimate tilt of the season - and game three of the four-game set between Columbia and Rome - is on Sunday at 2:00 p.m. Left-hander Marty Anderson (0-4, 5.76) starts for the Fireflies and faces Braves southpaw Tucker Davidson (5-4, 2.53).
You can listen to the action on ESPN Columbia 94.9 FM and 1230 AM, ColumbiaFireflies.com and the TuneIn Radio app starting at 1:45 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.