A brilliant pitching performance by Frank Lopez and a clutch bases-loaded single by Ronald Guzman helped the Hickory Crawdads (15-19) snap their 6-game losing streak with a 3-0 win over the Augusta GreenJackets (15-20) at L.P. Fran Stadium.
Lopez, who didn't figure in Saturday night's decision, was dominant as he had a perfect game through five innings. He tossed a season-best seven shutout innings and he struck out a season-high nine batters. Those seven scoreless innings are also a season-high for the Crawdads pitching staff.
The Crawdads finally broke through in the eighth when Guzman broke up the scoreless tie with a bases-loaded, two-run single to right field. Isiah Kiner-Falefa got things started with a one-out single off of 'Jackets reliever Daniel Slania. Evan Van Hoosier followed with a double to left before Nick Vickerson walked to load the bases setting the stage for Guzman.
Guzman would eventually come around to score as well on a wild pitch that gave the 'Dads a 3-0 lead. Matt Lujan of the Greenjackets tossed six shutout innings, allowing two hits, three walks, and he struck out six. Augusta's Ray Black was clocked at 102 mph on the stadium radar gun while setting down the 'Dads in order in the seventh.
Cody Kendall (2-2) earned the win with two shutout innings out of the bullpen. Slania (0-1) took the loss for the GreenJackets after allowing two runs on two hits over just two-thirds of an inning.
Guzman was 1-2 with two RBI, two walks and a run scored. Kiner-Falefa was the only 'Dad with a multi-hit game going 2-3 with a run scored. Van Hoosier finished 1-3 with a double, a walk, and a run scored. Ryder Jones of the Greenjackets was 0-4.
The two teams will meet up again on Sunday for game two of the four-game series, with the Mother's Day first pitch scheduled for 5:00 pm.
All-Star Tickets on Sale: Tickets to the 55th Annual South Atlantic League All-Star Game in Hickory on June 17th are on sale now!
Mothers Day: The Crawdads will wrap up Breast Cancer Awareness Weekend while also celebrating Mothers Day tomorrow! All moms get a FREE ticket to the game as well as a FREE carnation! The 'Dads will also conclude their game-worn pink jersey auction with a live silent auction at the park! JERSEY AUCTION
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!
Crawdads Crowne Plaza All-Star Package
The Hickory Crawdads and the Crowne Plaza hotel, the official host hotel of the Crawdads, are proud to announce a special package allowing out of town fans to save on both their rooming and ticket to the 55th Annual South Atlantic League All-Star Game at L.P. Frans Stadium.
To take advantage of the hotel and ticket combo deal, fans first need to call the Crowne Plaza of Hickory at (828) 323-1000 and mention the SAL All-Star Game to receive a room for only $89, plus tax. Fans can then call the Crawdads front office at (838) 322-3000 with their hotel confirmation code to receive an All-Star Game ticket for only $10.
The SAL All-Star Game is scheduled for Tuesday, June 17th at 7:00 pm at L.P. Frans Stadium. The game will highlight a two-day All-Star extravaganza, including the Downtown All-Star Bash on the 16th, the SAL Hall-of-Fame Luncheon the afternoon of the 17th, the free Fan Fest prior to the game, the Post-Game After Party, and more.
For more information regarding the Crawdads All-Star Game hotel deal, call the 'Dads front office at (828) 322-3000.
Breast Cancer Awareness Weekend: The Crawdads annual Breast Cancer Awareness weekend presented by Kicks 103.3 FM starts TOMORROW! Friday (5/9) will have "Paint the Park Pink", with fans able to get a $5 ticket by wearing pink to the game. Saturday (5/10) will see the first 1,000 fans with paid admittance take home a pink, replica Crawdads jersey courtesy of Pepsi. Sunday (5/11) will wrap up the festivities with a live, silent auction of the 'Dads game-worn, pink uniforms!
Photo Courtesy: Frank Lopez, Hickory Crawdads