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Yankees Win Game One in Rain-Delayed Thriller

July 17, 2016


PULASKI, Virginia - In a season as rainy as 2016, it came as no surprise that the Pulaski Yankees and Johnson City Cardinals were forced to delay their game two hours Saturday night before Pulaski won 6-5. The Yankees (10-12) and the Cardinals (12-9) had played one inning when rain started pouring at Calfee Park delaying the start of the second inning until 9:30 p.m.

     The Cardinals led 2-0 when the game was called. Caleb Lopes and Yariel Gonzalez led the first inning off with a pair of singles followed by a fielder's choice that allowed Shane Billings on base. Lopes was driven home on a sac fly by Joshua Lopez. Erik Garcia drove in Gonzalez with an RBI single to left field. The Yankees followed with no hits in the bottom half of the first.

     Pulaski reliever Alex Bisacca allowed no hits in the top of the second before the Yankees got their offense going thanks to a home run to right field by Dermis Garcia.

     The Cardinals added insurance runs to their lead in the fourth inning. Stephen Zavala started the inning off with a single. After stealing second base he was driven home on an RBI double by Matt Fiedler. On the next at bat, Fiedler scored thanks to an RBI double to left field by Jonathan Rivera.

     The Yankees answered in the bottom of the fifth inning after Leonardo Molina reached third base on an error. Welfrin Mateo then singled to drive in Molina.

     Things were quiet for the next four innings until the Yankees got going again in the bottom of the ninth. Tim Lynch reached first base on an error before Victor Rey advanced him to second with a single. Mateo tied it up with a two RBI single. When Blake Rutherford stepped up to the plate, he advanced Mateo with a single. Wilkerman Garcia grounded into a double play to send the game to extra innings.  

     The Cardinals did not take long to get across the plate in the tenth. Shane Billings drove in J. R. Davis with a two-out double to put the Cardinals up by one.

     The Yankees would not go down easily, though. In the bottom of the tenth, Dermis Garcia reached first base before advancing to third on a single by Isiah Gilliam. Josh Gardiner came into the game as a pinch runner to replace Garcia. Tim Lynch drove in Gardiner with a double to tie up the game. Gilliam rounded third but was tagged out at home plate, leaving Lynch at second with two outs and Molina at bat.

     The Yankees struck back in the bottom of the twelfth inning as Estevan Florial struck out but reached second base on a dropped third strike. Dermis Garcia advanced Florial to third with a single before stealing second base. The Cardinals intentionally walked Isiah Gilliam to load the bases with no outs. Leonardo Molina then drove in Estevan Florial with a single to win the game.

     Pulaski reliever Tyler Honahan (1-0) picked up the win pitching three innings while giving up one run and striking out four. Johnson City reliever Yeison Medina (2-1) got the loss while pitching 1.1 innings and giving up one unearned run.

     The Yankees will play Johnson City again Sunday night at 5 p.m. at Calfee Park. Gates open at 3:30 p.m.