(WOODBRIDGE, VA) - The Myrtle Beach Pelicans defeated the Potomac Nationals 3-2 in front of a crowd 4,214 on Memorial Day at Pfitzner Stadium. Cody Buckel tossed six innings for the Pelicans striking out nine earning the victory.
Myrtle Beach started the scoring in the second off of Potomac starter Robbie Ray. Vinny DiFazio doubled then scored on a two-out single by Jake Skole to give the Pelicans a 1-0 lead.
The Pelicans scored again in the fourth. Tomas Telis led off reaching on a throwing error by Zach Walters. Christian Villanueva singled in Telis on a line drive to left and the Pelicans led 2-0.
Again Myrtle got on the board thanks to defensive miscues by the P-Nats. In the top of the seventh, DiFazio hit a double to right that Randolph Oduber lost in the sky. DiFazio then scored on a wild pitch extending the Pelican lead to 3-0. The day ended in the seventh for Ray who gave up three runs with just two earned and struck out two. It was the first time into the seventh for Ray in his professional career.
The Pelicans starter Cody Buckel had no problems with the Nationals. He tossed six innings striking out nine and yielding just three hits while walking one. Buckel struck out nine over six scoreless for the second time against the P-Nats in three starters.
Potomac did finally score in the eighth off of Myrtle Beach reliever Ben Henry. Justin Bloxom led off the inning with a single. Then Adrian Sanchez hit a triple off the right field wall scoring Bloxom to bring the P-Nats within 3-1. But with no out, Randolph Oduber struck out. The next batter Blake Kelso hit into a 1-5 double play lining a ball back to the pitcher Henry who threw out Sanchez who was caught off of third base.
The Nationals last chance was in the ninth inning against Jimmy Reyes of Myrtle Beach. JP Ramirez led off the inning with a double. He would score on a one-out infield single by David Freitas to bring Potomac within 3-2 of Myrtle Beach. Freitas was pinch ran for by Francisco Soriano. With Zach Walters batting, Soriano was caught stealing 1-3-6 on a pick off move by Reyes for the second out of the inning. Walters struck out to end the contest and Reyes earned his second save of the season.
Buckel (4-2) lowered his ERA to a Carolina League leading 1.19. Ray (1-2) tossed a quality start but took his first home loss of the season.
Washington 1B/OF Michael Morse comes to the Pfitz tomorrow to start a rehab assignment with Potomac. The Nationals face off with the Myrtle Beach Pelicans for a 7:05 PM start. For tickets, please call us at 703-590-2311 or visit www.potomacnationals.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.