Willi Castro drilled a three-run homer to left field with one out in the ninth inning to cap off a five-run outburst, tying the game at 6-all and forcing extra innings where the Hillcats eventually prevailed in the 10th, 8-6. It marked the first time in 2017 the Hillcats overcame a deficit in the seventh inning or later to win a game as well as Lynchburg's first extra-inning victory of the year.
Trailing 6-1 entering the ninth, the first four batters reached base, beginning with a Martin Cervenka single to center field. Andrew Calica walked, and Yonathan Mendoza singled to load the bases. Jodd Carter drove in a run with a base hit to right, and Daniel Salters brought in Calica with an RBI groundout to make it 6-3.
With two on and one out, Castro belted a ball beyond the left-field fence to tie the score, 6-6. It marked his second home run of the season, both of which have been from the right side of the plate. It also represented the Hillcats' first home run in the ninth inning.
Sicnarf Loopstok opened the 10th with a walk, and advanced to second on a groundout. He moved over to third on a base hit by Calica. With Mendoza at the plate, Loopstok sprinted home on a wild pitch to break the tie. Mendoza proceeded to knock in Calica with a single to center field, stretching the margin to 8-6.
Jordan Milbrath struck out the side in the 10th to earn his first save. Kieran Lovegrove received the victory by tossing a scoreless ninth. Ryan Riga took the loss after allowing the tying run in the ninth and two more in the 10th.
Lynchburg's first run of the game came on an RBI single by Loopstok in the first inning after Sam Haggerty singled and stole second base to start the contest. Winston-Salem scored the majority of its runs on the long ball. Ronald Bueno hit a three-run homer to right in the third, and Zack Collins cracked a two-run homer in the eighth.
The Hillcats play a morning game Wednesday at 11 a.m. Brock Hartson (1-1, 3.00) will take the mound for Lynchburg. Fans can listen to the game live at www.lynchburg-hillcats.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.