MODESTO, CA - The JetHawks are coming home to Lancaster needing just one win for the franchise's first Cal League title. They beat the Modesto Nuts, 11-2, in Game 2 of the Championship Series at John Thurman Field on Friday night.
Lancaster took the first two games of the series in Modesto and now will have three chances to clinch the title at home.
The JetHawks clicked in every facet of the game on Friday night, pounding out 12 hits and allowing just two runs while striking out 11 Modesto hitters.
Blair Walters (1-0) allowed one run on six hits over five innings and struck out six without issuing a walk. By the time he left the game, his offense had given him a 7-1 lead.
Andrew Aplin led the charge with a 4-for-5 effort including three doubles. The centerfielder drove in two runs including an RBI-groundout during the JetHawks three-run third inning.
With two men on and one out, Jiovanni Mier hit a sinking line drive to centerfield that dipped under the glove of Rafael Ortega for an error. Chris Epps scored from third and Carlos Perez moved from first to third. He scored on Aplin's groundball on the very next pitch. Domingo Santana doubled in Mier to cap off the scoring against starter Juan Gonzalez.
Gonzalez (0-2) lasted four innings and allowed three runs - one earned - on four hits with a strikeout and a walk.
His replacement, Roberto Padilla, didn't fair well in the fifth. Aplin doubled and moved to third on a wild pitch before scoring on an Erik Castro sac fly. After walks to Santana and Jonathan Meyer, manager Lenn Sakata went to the bullpen.
New reliever Geoff Parker missed the zone with his first three pitches to Telvin Nash before the JetHawks' home run leader deposited the 3-0 pitch over the centerfield fence for a three-run homer.
Lancaster scored a run in the sixth on an Aplin double and three runs in the ninth to seal the victory. Nash singled home Castro pick up his fourth RBI of the game while Perez and Delino DeShields Jr. drove in runs later in the inning.
All nine JetHawks starters scored at least one run in the game. DeShields went 2-for-5 and reached base three times adding a run and a stolen base to his stat line. Meyer reached base three times, once on a double, and scored twice.
Modesto scored its first run on a passed ball in the fifth inning. Its second came on a Dustin Garneau sac fly in the ninth.
The JetHawks can win the Cal League crown in Game 3 on Saturday night at The Hangar. Colton Cain will get the start against Rockies lefty Jorge De La Rosa who is making his second rehab start with the Nuts. First pitch is set for 7:00 pm.
Tickets for Game 3 and Games 4 and 5 (if necessary) are available. For more information please contact the JetHawks box office at (661) 726-5400.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.