Dragons top Lugnuts in 11 innings, 4-3

Dan Lietz gave the Lugnuts four huge innings of relief, holding the Dragons scoreless from the 8th through the 10th. (Kyle Castle)

By Jesse Goldberg-Strassler / Lansing Lugnuts | April 19, 2017 11:04 PM ET

DAYTON, OH - Hector Vargas blooped a bases-loaded single over a drawn-in infield, lifting the Dayton Dragons (9-4) to a 4-3 11-inning victory over the Lansing Lugnuts (7-6) on Wednesday night at Fifth Third Field.

The Dragons took two of three games in the series, pushing the Lugnuts into third place in the Eastern Division.

Cassidy Brown led off the bottom of the eleventh with a first-pitch single against reliever Jackson McClelland (Loss, 0-1). Jose Siri dropped a bunt down the first-base line, and McClelland's throw to first went awry, sending Brown chugging to third and Siri racing to second. Following an intentional walk of Brantley Bell, Vargas hit a flare over shortstop Bo Bichette to win the game.

Dayton reliever Jesse Adams (Win, 2-0) held the Lugnuts off the scoreboard in the tenth and eleventh innings to notch the victory.

Lansing forced extra innings thanks to a pair of late rallies.

Dayton brought a 2-1 lead to the seventh, only to see Edward Olivares draw a two-out walk, steal second and come home on a Jake Thomas RBI single.

John Sansone delivered an RBI single in the last of the seventh, putting the Dragons up 3-2 - but Bradley Jones cranked a two-out homer to left in the eighth to tie the game again. It was Jones's third roundtripper of the series and his fifth of the season, tying him for the Midwest League home run lead.

Lansing reliever Dan Lietz supplied four innings of quality relief, allowing only the one seventh-inning run and setting the Dragons down in order in both the ninth and tenth innings.

Lietz's excellent outing came on the heels of Mike Ellenbest's best professional appearance. The right-hander from Saginaw Valley State tossed a career high six innings, giving up seven hits and two runs, walking one and striking out four.

Lansing's offense was led by Jones, who went 2-for-4 with an intentional walk and two RBIs, raising his batting average to .396. Vladimir Guerrero, Jr. added two doubles in five at-bats, reaching base for the 13th straight game.

The Nuts now return to Michigan's state capital, opening a seven-game homestand with a Labatt Thirsty Thursday against Bowling Green featuring $2 beers and sodas, plus half off craft beers. Right-hander Osman Gutierrez (0-2, 11.25) gets the start opposite Hot Rods left-hander Brock Burke (1-0, 0.00), with gates opening at 6 p.m. and first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. Tickets may be purchased at the Cooley Law School Stadium box office, by calling (517) 485-4500 or via lansinglugnuts.com.

 

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

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