ZEBULON, NC - The Carolina Mudcats (6-4) scored nine straight runs between the sixth and eighth innings to defeat the Frederick Keys (4-6) 9-3 on Sunday afternoon at Five County Stadium. With the setback, the Keys and Muddies split the four-game series.
Holding a 3-0 lead after 5.5 frames, the Mudcats scored three runs in each of their next three trips to bat. In the sixth, Carolina tied the game against Franderlin Romero. With one out, Jake Gatewood doubled and came home on a base hit by Luis Aviles. That sent up Maryland native, Troy Stokes Jr., who clubbed a two-run shot to left-center.
Romero (0-1) fared no better in the seventh. Trent Clark and Isan Diaz both singled, while the former came in on another two-bagger by Gatewood. It looked like Romero might escape after retiring Stokes Jr., but Max McDowell singled home two more to prompt a pitching change. Tagged with the loss, Romero surrendered six runs on eight hits in only 1.2 innings.
Carolina completed its scoring in the eighth. With men at second and third, Clark brought in a run on a sacrifice fly, while Gatewood added a third double and Aviles an additional RBI single.
The late Muddies surge meant a no-decision for Ofelky Peralta, who tossed five shutout innings of one-hit baseball. Although he walked four, he struck out nine, one short of a career-best.
Frederick took a 1-0 edge after one, following doubles by Stevie Wilkerson and Randolph Gassaway. Two additional markers came the visitor's way in the fifth. With two outs, Ryan Mountcastle doubled and scored on a Gassaway single. After Gassaway moved up to second on the throw, Jomar Reyes knocked him home with a base hit to left.
Quintin Torres-Costa (2-0) earned the win for Carolina. Pitching three innings, he allowed two runs on four hits and struck out five. Jon Olczak worked the last two innings to record his second save. He struck out four.
The Keys move to Winston-Salem to play the final three games of their roadtrip. Left-hander Keegan Akin (0-1, 14.29) makes the start for the Keys against Dash right-hander Zach Thompson (0-1, 4.50). First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. and the broadcast can be heard on 1450 AM The Source, frederickkeys.com and the TuneIn Radio App. The team returns to Nymeo Field on Thursday, April 20 when the Salem Red Sox come to town. For tickets, fans can call the box office at 301-815-9939 or visit frederickkeys.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.