(LYNCHBURG, VA) Sammy Solis shut down the Lynchburg Hillcats for seven innings and got just enough run support as the Potomac Nationals leveled the series with a 2-0 win at City Stadium on Sunday night. It was Solis's second win in as many starts with Potomac and set up a rubber match in the series finale Monday.
The lefthander Solis faced his toughest challenge in the very first inning. Consecutive one-out singles from Andrelton Simmons and Phil Gosselin put Solis in a jam, but he induced a pair of ground balls to second to escape trouble. He retired Lynchburg in order in the second and third innings, by which time the Nationals had taken a lead.
In the third, J.R. Higley worked a leadoff walk and advanced to second on Eury Perez's sacrifice bunt. He scampered to third on a passed ball and scored on a wild pitch by Lynchburg starter Blaine Sims (2-4) and the P-Nats led 1-0.
Solis (2-0) worked around a walk and a hit in the fourth inning, yielded just a single in the fifth and used a double play to navigate around a leadoff walk in the sixth.
In the Nationals' sixth, the offense got Solis another run. With one out, Jeff Kobernus laid down a perfect bunt single and Destin Hood walked. Justin Bloxom then doubled to left to score Kobernus; Hood was thrown out at home on the play but Potomac (39-48, 10-8) had a 2-0 advantage.
Solis pitched a perfect seventh inning, including his fifth and final strikeout. On the evening, he allowed only four hits before he turned it over to a trio of bullpen arms.
Joe Testa got the first two outs of the eighth and gave way to Rob Wort. Wort surrendered a single to Simmons but popped up Gosselin to end the threat.
Hector Nelo allowed only a two-out single in the ninth and earned his ninth save in ten tries.
With the win, Potomac snapped a six-game losing skid against Lynchburg (36-51, 6-11) and moved to 10-8 in the second half.
Paul Demny takes the mound for Potomac on Monday night against Aaron Shafer at 7:05 P.M.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.