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Pelicans and Fireflies Split Saturday Doubleheader

June 5, 2021

The Pelicans took a no-hitter into the seventh inning in game one

The Pelicans took a no-hitter into the seventh inning in game one

By Sam Weiderhaft

In the second Saturday doubleheader of the season, the Pelicans split the two-game set with the Columbia Fireflies with a 4-0 win in game one and a 5-2 loss in game two. Saturday was also the Adam vs. Ed Charity Bobblehead Challenge, where WPDE Chief Meteorologist Ed Piotrowski and host of the Gator Morning Show Adam Dellinger squared off to see who could sell more bobbleheads, with the money going to the Make A Wish Foundation, Salvation Army, and the Maddie Mcknight family.

The Pelicans now sit at 15-14 after the doubleheader, while the Fireflies move to 18-11 and continue to sit on top of the Low-A East, South division standings.

Game One: The Pelicans came three outs away from tossing a combined seven-inning no-hitter against the Fireflies on the first contest on Saturday with a 4-0 victory. The Pelicans shut out the Fireflies for the second game in a row after blanking them 1-0 on Friday night.

The Pelicans’ offense was productive, turning six hits into four runs. Yohendrick Pinango (2-3, 2 R) was the only Pelican with a multi-hit performance, while Luis Verdugo (1-3, 3 RBI) brought home three runs to command the lineup.

The Pelicans’ pitching staff took a combined no-hitter into the seventh inning with Sam Thoresen leading the charge after tossing four innings with six strikeouts. Garbiel Jaramillo (1-0) earned his first win of the season with two hitless innings in relief with Danis Correa giving up the only hit of the game for Columbia in the seventh.

Felix Familia (1-3, 2B) picked up the only hit in the seventh inning for Columbia. Matt Stil (2-1) would take the loss after starting the game and giving up all four runs in just over two innings pitched.

The Pelicans pounced first with a big first inning. Pinango got his first hit with a single back up the middle with one out, and after Jordan Nwogu popped up for the second out, Matt Mervis drew a walk to put runners on first and second. Pablo Aliendo drove a double to left-center field that leaped over the wall to score one run, and Luis Verdugo would knock both runners on with a single up the middle to put the Pelicans up 3-0 after the first frame.

Myrtle Beach loaded the bases in the bottom half of the third and Verdugo hit another ground ball back up the middle that shortstop Rubendy Jaquez had trouble with to plate another run and the Pelicans went up 4-0.

The pitching staff for the Birds would take a no-hitter all the way to the seventh inning when Correa gave up a double to left field off the bat of Familia, but that’s all Columbia would get as the game ended with the next three batters retired.

Game Two: Both teams scored in the first inning but the Fireflies kept the pressure on throughout the game to take a 5-2 win.

Pinango (1-2, HR, 2 RBI) kept up his hot hitting with a home run to right-center field to score the only runs of the game for Myrtle Beach. Ezequiel Pagan (2-3) posted his first multi-hit game in a Pelicans uniform.

Richard Gallardo got the start and took the loss after allowing seven hits and four earned runs through his 4.2 innings pitched. Gallardo struck out three and walked two in the defeat.

Columbia held all their hits in for the second game with nine on the night. Omar Hernandez (2-4, 3B, 2 RBI) stood out with the best performance of the night with a triple and two runs batted in.

The win went to Walter Pennington (2-1) after tossing two hitless innings in relief. Nathan Webb picked up his second save of the year with two strikeouts in the final inning.

Unlike game one, the Fireflies were on it from the start with a two-run first inning. Herard Gonzalez and Darryl Collins both singled off Gallardo to start the game with Maikel Garcia driving in the first run with a sac fly. Collins came home to score later in the inning with an Omar Hernandez RBI single to go up 2-0.

Myrtle Beach responded right back in their half as Flemin Bautista notched a base hit to right field to get on. Two batters later, Pinango hit a moonshot home run to right-center for his second homer of the season, and the game was tied 2-2.

The Fireflies took command in their half of the third with Garcia walking with one out to get on base. Juan Carlos Negret hit a sharp line drive down the left-field line to score Garcia and put Columbia on top. One batter later, Hernandez tripled on a fly ball to right field that Jonathan Sierra came up short on, and Negret came home to make it 4-2.

Columbia brought home one more insurance run in the seventh inning courtesy of a Tyler Tolbert RBI single. The Pelicans would bring the tying run to the plate but fail to bring any runs home in their half of the final frame.

Myrtle Beach and Columbia will meet for the sixth and final time of this series on Sunday at 6:05 p.m. The Fireflies lead the series three games to two.