CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - For the second time this road trip, Northwest Arkansas played deep into the night. This time, the victory was lit by Logan Moon. The Naturals' right-fielder smacked a three-run triple into right-centerfield with two outs in the top of the 13th inning to edge the Hooks, 9-7 on Monday night at Whataburger Field.
The home Hooks played the odds two pitches prior with the bases loaded and one out. Zane Evans hit a fly ball down the right-field line that Corpus Christi right-fielder, Ramon Laureano elected not to catch and fall foul for a strike. It seemed to work until reliever, Ryan Thompson, threw the first pitch to Moon to clear the bases.
The inning began with a one-out single Frank Schwindel. Pinch-runner Terrance Gore moved to third base on a hit-and-run executed by Mauricio Ramos to put runners at the corners. After an intentional walk to Humberto Arteaga with one out, Moon's heroics shined through two batters later.
Northwest Arkansas (4-7) held a 5-0 lead through the first five and half innings. Alfredo Escalera recorded a run-scoring triple to plate Ruben Sosa from second to begin the scoring in the third inning and was brought home by a line-drive single to right-field by Samir Duenez a batter later. Duenez tacked on a two-run home run in the sixth inning, his first of the year, while Ramos hit a solo home run two hitters later, giving the Naturals a five-run cushion.
After the Hooks plated three runs in the bottom of the fifth, Duenez added his fourth RBI of the night in the top of the sixth to build the Naturals lead back to three-run advantage for starter, Zach Lovvorn. The Naturals' starter worked 5.2 innings, allowed two runs on seven hits with three strike outs in a no-decision effort.
Corpus Christi (7-4) tied the game at 6-6 with a three-run sixth frame and that score held until the 13th inning. The win for the Naturals snapped the Hooks three-game winning streak entering the ball game on Monday night.
Reliever, Luis Rico (1-1, 5.40) picked up his first Double-A victory with 2.0 innings of one-run relief. Left-hander, Sam Selman and right-hander, Jake Newberry combined to retire 13 straight batters in the seventh through the 11th innings. Newberry allowed one hit over three strong frames with two strikeouts.
Duenez finished with his second straight three-hit performance and a season-high four runs batted in. Schwindel collected a pair of hits on the night as did Ramos and Escalera.
Northwest Arkansas looks for the club's first series win of the season on Tuesday night against Corpus Christi. Left-hander, Matt Tenuta (1-0, 7.88) will make his second start of the road trip and third appearance of the season against former Royals farmhand right-hander, Kyle Smith (1-0, 5.14) going for the Hooks.
Join Benjamin Kelly with a 6:45 Indigo Sky Casino Pregame Show leading up to first pitch on AM-1590, the Ticket-2.
Follow the Northwest Arkansas Naturals on Facebook and Twitter @NWANaturals all throughout the year by using the hashtag #NaturalPastime and #CrowntoCrown for all of our up-to-date information on Season 10 of Naturals baseball.
The Northwest Arkansas Naturals are the Double-A Texas League Affiliate of the Kansas City Royals. The Naturals play at state-of-the-art Arvest Ballpark in Springdale, Ark. For more information, including statistics, ticket options, and more, please visit NWANaturals.com, and follow us on Twitter @NWANaturals and Facebook.com/Naturals.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.