|Mazara Singles Home Game Winner In 9th|
|Written by Staff Reports|
|Monday, 27 May 2013 06:45|
An already memorable Memorial Day weekend was capped off in perfect fashion Sunday night, as Nomar Mazara singled home the winning run in the ninth to give the Hickory Crawdads a 6-5 win and a
series victory over the Kannapolis Intimidators.
In front of 2,822 fans at L.P. Frans Stadium, the Crawdads continued their recent streak of late-game dramatics with their second walk-off victory of the series. The win gave the 'Dads a 3 games to one series win over Kannapolis, and concluded their home stand with a 5-1 record.
In addition to his game-winning hit, Mazara also kicked off the Crawdads scoring in the first with a 2-out, bases-loaded single to right that plated two and gave Hickory a 2-0 lead. The advantage would swell to 3-0 in the second, when Jorge Alfaro picked up a two-out, RBI single of his own.
The 'Dads offense would cool off after that, allowing the Intimidators a chance to rally. Kannapolis got on the scoreboard with a run in the top of the third to cut the score to 3-1, before plating three runs in the fifth to chase Crawdads starter Andrew Faulkner and take a 4-3 advantage. The Intimidators tacked on one final run in the sixth on a solo homer by Micah Johnson to push their lead to 5-3.
Hickory would mount a rally of their own in the bottom of the seventh, with Alfaro and Joey Gallo each picking up RBI doubles to tie up the game at 5-5. The score would remain the same until the ninth, setting up Mazara's dramatic hit.
Alfaro led off the frame with a strikeout before Ryan Rua doubled inside the third base bag to put the winning runner on second with only one out. The Intimidators would then pitch around Gallo to set up a potential double play with Mazara coming to the plate. The 18-year-old outfielder had different plans however, as he fought off a two-strike fastball and lofted it into center field to drive in Rua and give the 'Dads the 6-5 victory.
The win was the sixth time in the last three years that Hickory has picked up a walk-off victory against Kannapolis. Mazara finished the game 2-4 with 3 RBI, while Alfaro went 3-4 with a double and two runs scored.
The 9th inning heroics made a winner out of Crawdads reliever Keone Kela (1-1) who pitched two perfect innings of relief with three strikeouts. Intimidators' reliever Joe Dvorsky (0-2) took the loss after allowing the ninth inning run to score.
The Crawdads (28-20) keep pace with the Hagerstown Suns and remain two games back in the SAL North Division with the win. The Intimidators (16-30) fall 13 games back with the loss. The 'Dads will now hit the road for a week, starting with a 3-game series in Augusta against the Green Jackets. First pitch Monday night is scheduled for 7:05 pm. Coverage can be heard online at Hickorycrawdads.com
NOTES: The Crawdads will now hit the road for a 7-game road trip, starting with a three-game series in Augusta on Monday night. The 'Das will return home on Tuesday, June 4th for a 3-game series against the Lakewood Blue Claws....Individual Tickets for all Crawdads home games are available right now at Hickorycrawdads.com or by calling (828) 322-3000! Group outings, corporate partnerships, Buffalo Wild Wings Claw Club memberships and Ticket Books are also available right now by calling the Front Office at (828) 322-3000.
Photo Courtesy: Nomar Mazara, Hickory Crawdads
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