LYNCHBURG, VA (WOOD DUCKS MEDIA RELATIONS) – A four-run third inning for the Hillcats (25-17, 65-46) proved to be plenty in a 5-2 win over the Wood Ducks (20-22, 44-67) on Friday night. The Woodies received RBIs from Chuck Moorman and Luis La O and terrific work from the bullpen in the defeat.
Down East starter Steven Bruce allowed three earned runs over his five innings of work, while matching his career-high with six strikeouts. The right-hander also did not walk a batter after issuing five free passes in his last start.
The rally for Lynchburg began with three singles to start the third – the first baserunners off Bruce to that point in the night. RBIs were produced with each of the next four batters to give the Hillcats the big lead early.
Meanwhile, their starter Dominic DeMasi twirled a gem against the Wood Ducks. He worked seven innings and struck out eight – both career-highs. The Woodies got on the board in the fifth thanks to a liner up the middle from Moorman to score Josh Morgan from second.
Yet in the bottom half of the inning, Lynchburg scored an unearned run on a Ti’Quan Forbes throwing error. He would have a career-high three errors on the night.
The 5-1 score would hold thanks to the work of Jacob Shortslef and Kelvin Vasquez out of the bullpen with neither arm allowing a hit in the final three innings. Shortslef worked two perfect innings with four strikeouts in his return from the disabled list.
La O lined a triple to right-center to bring home Matt Lipka from first to show life in the eighth. It was La O’s second triple of the season and his team-leading 43rd RBI.
Game three of the series comes at 6:00 p.m. on Saturday night. Right-hander Emerson Martinez (1-8, 4.72) will face lefty Tanner Tully (0-1, 7.20) as the Woodies try to take their first game against the league leaders.
You can listen to every pitch of the 2017 season live on Sports/Talk 960 The Bull or streamed on the TuneIn Radio app.