BOWLING GREEN, KY - A day after their Opening Day walk-off win over the Dragons, the Hot Rods scored in the opening frame and led wire-to-wire on their way to an 8-4 victory and their second consecutive win over Dayton.
Austin Franklin (W, 1-0) started the game on the bump for the Hot Rods and threw five innings of 2-hit, one-run baseball, while striking out three and walking two. Franklin is listed as the Tampa Bay Ray's 10th overall prospect according to Baseball America.
The scoring started in the first when on a full count, Hot Rods starting shortstop Taylor Walls hit a solo home run to right-center field. The home run was Wall's first of the season and the second of his career.
An inning later, catcher Ronaldo Hernandez continued his red-hot start with a leadoff double. He later advanced on a wild pitch, and ultimately scored on a sacrifice fly by first baseman, Devin Davis.
Later in the fourth, on the first pitch he saw, Zac Law hit a solo home run to push the lead to 3-0. Ronaldo Hernandez and Eleardo Cabrera followed with back-to-back singles. Devin Davis scored Hernandez on an RBI single and Moises Gomez scored Cabrera on an RBI ground out to push the lead to 5-0 after four.
Dayton would not quit however, as they would score in three successive innings. Dragon catcher Henrik Clementina hit a solo home run to right field in the fifth. The run was the only earned run of the night for Austin Franklin. An inning later, Riley O'Brien replaced Franklin and allowed a single to Miles Gordon who stole second and scored on a John Sansone ground out. After a Jeter Downs RBI double in the 7th, the Hot Rods lead was 5-3.
The Hot Rods would respond in the bottom of the frame however. Moises Gomez led off the 7th with a triple and after Emilio Gustave walked, Vidal Brujan lined a single to right to score Gomez. The next batter, Zach Rutherford, blooped a single to right and scored Gustave. Two batters later, Zac Law collected his second RBI of the game when his groundout to second scored Brujan to extend the Hot Rods lead to 8-4.
Austin Schryver made his Hot Rods debut in the 8th and allowed a solo home run to Stuart Fairchild. Schryver would bounce back and shut the Dragons down the rest of the way as the Hot Rods held on to win 8-4.
Austin Franklin was the winner for the Hot Rods, while Dragons starter Mac Sceroler was hung with the loss for Dayton.
The Hot Rods will travel to Dayton to continue the series tomorrow with first pitch at 6:00 pm at Fifth Third Field. Righty Tobias Myers will get the start for Bowling Green tomorrow while Dayton will counter with right hander Tyler Mondile.
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