MONTGOMERY, AL - Wendell Rijo and Greyson Jenista hit back-to-back homers in a five-run third inning as the Mississippi Braves beat the Montgomery Biscuits 8-5 Wednesday night to even the Double-A South Championship Series at 1-1. The M-Braves went on to score eight runs on 11 hits, and M-Braves relievers
MONTGOMERY, AL - Wendell Rijo and Greyson Jenista hit back-to-back homers in a five-run third inning as the Mississippi Braves beat the Montgomery Biscuits 8-5 Wednesday night to even the Double-A South Championship Series at 1-1. The M-Braves went on to score eight runs on 11 hits, and M-Braves relievers retired 12 of the final 13 batters of the game.
The M-Braves (1-1) opened the scoring in the top of the first inning. Justin Dean led off the inning with an infield single and stole second base. Three batters later, Shea Langeliers laced a 112 mile per hour RBI single to left-centerfield to give the M-Braves an early 1-0 lead.
Dean started the top of the third inning with a single and stole second base for the second time in two at-bats. Trey Harris then ripped an RBI double to the left-centerfield wall to score Dean. Two batters later, Braden Shewmake recorded an infield single, and Rijo followed with a line-drive three-run home run. On the very next pitch, Jenista launched a deep home run to right field to extend the lead to 6-0.
Joel Peguero started the bottom of the third inning in relief of Easton McGee (L, 0-1). The M-Braves touched up McGee with 3.0 innings, eight hits, five strikeouts, and six earned runs.
Jonathan Aranda began the bottom of the fourth inning with a walk, and Ford Proctor followed with a single. After a strikeout, Cal Stevenson walked to load the bases. Connor Hollis smacked a ball down the 1st baseline that Drew Lugbauer made a great diving play to limit Hollis to an RBI groundout and cut the lead to 6-1.
Michael Smith singled with one out in the bottom of the fifth inning, ending Freddy Tarnok's night. Tarnok finished with 4.1 innings, three hits, two walks, seven strikeouts, and two earned runs. Troy Bacon walked the first batter he faced, and Aranda delivered an RBI double to right field. Ford Proctor then launched a three-run home run to bring the Biscuits (1-1) within one at 6-5. Cal Stevenson walked and ended Bacon's night after .1 innings, two hits, two walks, one strikeout, and three earned runs. Brandon White (W, 1-0) struck out the only batter he faced in the inning.
Lugbauer and Jacob Pearson walked to open the eighth inning. The Biscuits then brought in Justin Sterner. Dean laid down a sacrifice bunt but was safe on a throwing error, and Harris delivered a two-RBI single with the bases loaded to push the lead to 8-5.
Nolan Kingham (S, 1) collected the save with a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth inning.
Kingham, White, and Corbin Clouse (H, 1) combined to pitch 4.1 innings with one hit and six strikeouts retiring 12 of the last 13 hitters.
Dean and Harris combined for four hits in the top of the lineup. Dean was 2-for-5 with two stolen bases and two runs scored. Harris was 2-for-4 with a double and three RBI. M-Braves batters drew eight walks in the game. Both teams combined to use 11 pitchers in the 3 hour, 40-minute contest.
The series shifts to Trustmark Park for game three on Friday night, and the remainder of the Double-A South Championship Series. RHP Spencer Strider (3-7, 4.71) starts for the M-Braves against RHP Jack Labosky (2-4, 4.20) for the Biscuits. The first pitch is 6:35 pm with coverage on 103.9 WYAB, mississippibraves.com, and milb.tv.
Score $5 Field Level Tickets or $10 Diamond Level Tickets for Game 3 on Friday and Game 4 on Saturday of the Double-A South Championship Series at Trustmark Park! Use unlock code "HOMER" when choosing your seats. Visit mississippibraves.com to get your tickets.
The 2021 Double-A South Championship Series is a best-of-five format. Group tickets are also available by calling 888-BRAVES4.