Dramatic finish sends Flying Squirrels to third straight defeat

Richmond Flying SquirrelsA play at the plate in the bottom of the ninth inning snubbed a potential tying run as the Richmond Flying Squirrels fell, 3-2, against the Reading Fightin Phils Friday night at The Diamond.

The Flying Squirrels (40-42) have dropped four of their last five games and 13 of their last 15.

Richmond’s rally in the bottom of the ninth started with an Andres Angulo. Simon Whiteman was hit by a pitch to reach base and a passed ball put runners on second and third with two outs. Zach Warren (Save, 1) entered with two outs and allowed a base hit to Tolman that scored Angulo, but Grenny Cumana’s throw from right field nabbed Whiteman at the plate to end the game.

Reading opened a 1-0 lead in the sixth inning when Grenny Cumana singled and Bryson Stott scored on a fielding error.

After Mitchell Tolman led off the bottom half of the sixth with a double, he advanced to third base on a groundout then scored on a wild pitch to even the score at 1-1. It was Tolman’s first hit and run in a Flying Squirrels uniform.

In the seventh, the Fightin Phils took a 2-1 lead on an RBI single by Matt Kroon off of Joey Marciano (Loss, 3-3).

Rodolfo Duran increased Reading’s lead to 3-1 in the eighth with an RBI double.

Michael Plassmeyer tossed 5.0 scoreless innings in his start for Richmond with seven strikeouts. He retired eight consecutive batters from the second to fifth inning.

Reading starter Hans Crouse pitched 5.0 scoreless innings in his Phillies organization debut, allowing two hits and three walks with five strikeouts. The Fightin Phils bullpen combo of Nick Lackney (Win, 3-0), Kyle Dohy, Billy Sullivan and Warren held the Flying Squirrels to one run and two hits.

The series continues Saturday night with first pitch scheduled for 6:05 p.m. Right-hander Akeel Morris (1-0, 10.80) will make the start for Richmond opposed by right-hander Adam Leverett (0-4, 9.37) for Reading.

On Saturday, the Flying Squirrels are hosting their first Faith Night and fans can come early for music and pregame player testimonials. In-Your-Face Fireworks presented by Hanover County 300th Anniversary will be on display after the game from inside the fences. Gates open at 5:00 p.m.

Tickets are available online at SquirrelsBaseball.com/Tickets, by phone at 804-359-3866 or in person at the Flying Squirrels offices.

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