Puckett pitches Hoppers to Opening Night win

Grasshoppers plate six runs to grab control of season's first game

By Josh Feldman / Greensboro Grasshoppers | April 5, 2018 10:28 PM ET

GREENSBORO, NC (April 5, 2018) - Brady Puckett spun 6.0 shutout innings to pitch the Greensboro Grasshoppers to an Opening Night win, 6-1, over the Hickory Crawdads on Thursday night at First National Bank Field.  Puckett (1-0) scattered seven hits and two walks while striking out four in his Class A debut with Greensboro (1-0).

Offensively, J.C. Millan paced the Hoppers, going 2-for-4 with a two doubles and a pair of RBI. Micah Brown also added two hits for the home team.

The Hoppers broke a scoreless tie in the third inning when Garvis Lara doubled in Micah Brown and Jhonny Santos. Greensboro bulked its lead in the fourth with three more runs thanks to a pair of leadoff extra-base hits. Marcos Riveras opened the home half of the fourth with a triple to left field, and J.C. Millan brought him home with a double. Brown, who drove in Millan with a base hit, came around to score on Aaron Knapp's grounder to right field for a 5-0 advantage. Millan added another tally in the fifth with an RBI-double to plate Rivera.  

Hickory starting pitcher Tyler Phillips (0-1) took the loss, allowing five runs on six hits over 3 and 2/3 innings while striking out four and walking two.  

Greensboro's bullpen kept the Crawdads off the board until the ninth inning. Reilly Hovis spun coreless, hitless innings in the seventh and eighth before HIckory's Kole Enright homered (1) off Manual Rodriguez for the lone opposing run.  

Greensboro continues this season-opening home stand on Friday at 7:00 p.m. against Hickory. Friday's game features post-game fireworks presented by Lincoln Financial. Tickets are available online at gsohoppers.com.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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