The Asheville Tourists (7-4) hung on for a 5-4 win Sunday night against the Hickory Crawdads at L.P. Fran Stadium.
Trent Daniel came on in relief in the bottom of the ninth and picked up his first save of the year. He coughed up two hits, but left runners on at second and third to squelch's Hickory's (5-6) rally.
He retired Nomar Mazara on a comebacker to the mound to end the game. Troy Neiman, who came on with two outs in the seventh, picked up his first win of the year.
The Tourists snapped a 4-4 tie and took the lead for good, thanks to Patrick Vakaika's sacrifice fly in the top of the eight.
Kellin Deglin blasted a two-run homer in the fifth, his second long ball of the year, that gave the Crawdads a shortlived 2-1 lead. The Tourists rallied with three runs in the top of the seventh.
Second baseman Michael Benjamin backboned the attack with third home run of the year, and his second home run in the series. But the Crawdads came right back with a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh to tie the games.
Kevin Torres and Jairo Beras got things startd with back-to-back walks. One out later, Nick Urbanus lined a single to right field that scored Torres and surprisingly also plated Beras with the tying run.
Beras, who was running on the pitch, scored all the way from first when Tourists right fielder Jordan Patterson took his time getting the ball to the infield.
The 4-4 tie wouldn't last long, as Asheville plated the go ahead run in the top of the eighth on an RBI sacrifice fly by Pat Valaika to take the 5-4 advantage they would go on to win by.
Cody Kendall (1-1) of the Crawdads suffered the loss. He coughed up the eventual winning run in the top of the eighth.
Torres was 2-3 with a walk and two runs scored, Deglan went 1-4 with a home run, two RBIs and two runs scored, and Urbanus ended up 1-4 with two RBIs. Both Brinson and Mazara finished with two hits apiece; Mazara had a double.
Sunday's loss also leaves he Crawdads a game under .500 for the first time this season. Te Crawdads continue their homestand with Kannapolis coming to town tonight for game one of a three-game series. First pitch scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
Make-A-Difference Monday: The Crawdads will have their first ever Make-A-Difference Monday tomorrow as they open up a 3-game series against Kannapolis. Exodus Homes will be the highlighted non-for-profit organization, with the group accepting laundry detergent, paper towels, toilet paper, hand sanitizer, dish detergent, and personal hygiene items in exchange for a FREE ticket to the game!
Crawdads Home Stand: The Crawdads are home for 3 more games on their current home stand, with Dollar Tuesday and Education Day/Business Person's Special! Check out all the 'Dads 2014 promotions HERE!
Stay Connected: Make sure to stay connected with the Crawdads by visiting the 'Dads website at www.hickorycrawdads.com, or by following us on Facebook and Twitter!
Photo Courtesy: Kellin Deglin, Hickory Crawdads