Potomac rallies to win, series advantage

Solano blast gets P-Nats even, walk gives them Finals lead

With Potomac on the ropes, Jhonatan Solano tied the game with one swing of the bat. (Joy R. Absalon/MLB.com)

By Alan Friedman / Special to MLB.com | September 11, 2008 7:50 PM ET

The Potomac Nationals were one out and three runs away from a 1-2 Carolina Championship series deficit. A homer and a bases-loaded walk an inning later, they had the Finals lead.

Jhonatan Solano smacked a three-run shot in the ninth inning and Michael Burgess drew the walk in the 10th to give Potomac an 8-7 come-from-behind win over Myrtle Beach on Thursday. Game 4 in the best-of-5 series will be Friday at Potomac.

"(Solano) thrives on that situation," Potomac manager Randy Knorr said. "He's already done that kind of thing a couple of other times this season.

"These guys never quit, it's been that way all year," he added. "I never thought (in the ninth) that it was over. I knew if we lost, these guys would go down fighting."

The Pelicans had snapped a 4-4 tie with two runs in the sixth on an RBI groundout by Phillip Britton and Gorkys Hernandez's run-scoring double. They added a run in the eighth on Brandon Hicks' solo homer for a 7-4 lead.

In the ninth, Boomer Whiting and Burgess walked for the Nationals. Ferdin Tejeda replaced Tyler Wilson on the mound for Myrtle Beach and fanned Stephen King for the second out, setting the stage for Solano's second blast of the playoffs.

In the 10th, the Nationals loaded the bases on two walks and Dee Brown's single off Brett Butts (0-1). After Francisco Plasencia grounded into a force at home for the second out, Brown scored on Burgess' base on balls.

It was the third walk-off win for the Nationals in this postseason, having achieved the feat in the first two games against the Wilmington Blue Rocks in the first round of the league playoffs.

Michael Martinez contributed to the Potomac cause with a two-run homer in the third.

Josh Wilkie (1-0) allowed one hit over two scoreless frames, fanning two without issuing a walk to pick up the win. Wilkie, Potomac starter Ross Detwiler and relievers Dan Leatherman and Clint Everts combined for 18 strikeouts.

"That's a good team over there," Knorr said of Myrtle Beach. "We know they're not going to lay down and we're going to have to play hard to beat them."

Alan Friedman is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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