TULSA, Okla. - The Naturals saw their season come to an end on Sunday night at ONEOK Field with the Tulsa Drillers winning Game 5 of the North Division Championship Series by a 6-1 final score. Northwest Arkansas concluded the season with a 67-73 regular season record and captured the club's third First Half North Division crown and appeared in the postseason for the seventh time in the franchise's 10-year history.
The Drillers struck first with a one-out double by Peter O'Brien in the third inning to break the scoreless tie against right-hander, Corey Ray (0-1). Tulsa then added to its lead with a two-run home run by Erick Mejia in the fourth frame to make it a 4-0 lead.
Drillers right-hander, Dennis Santana (0-1) authored a gem against the Naturals keeping the bats scoreless over 7.0 innings of three-hit baseball with 11 strike outs in his 2017 Texas League postseason debut.
The Naturals broke through on the scoreboard in the ninth inning, trailing 6-0 at that juncture by rattling off three straight hits to open the frame. Mauricio Ramos' RBI double drove home Samir Duenez from third for the Naturals lone tally.
Tulsa will play for the Texas League Championship attempting to capture the organizations first Texas League title since 1998. The three-time defending champions, Midland RockHounds, will oppose the Drillers.
The Naturals will open up the 2018 at Arvest Ballpark on Thursday, April 5 against the Corpus Christi Hooks (Houston Astros).
Follow the Northwest Arkansas Naturals on Facebook and Twitter @NWANaturals all throughout the off-season 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.