FredNats squander early lead in 9-7 loss

Fredericksburg NationalsThe Fredericksburg Nationals led 5-0 in the early innings of their Saturday night game against Delmarva, but fell 9-7 after some timely two-out hitting from the Shorebirds.

Colton Cowser’s three-run double highlighted a four-hit night for the 2021 first rounder, and gave the Shorebirds a lead they kept until the end of the game despite a late Fredericksburg rally in the top of the ninth. All nine of Delmarva’s runs scored with two outs in an inning.

The FredNats jumped out to an early lead in the second against Houston Roth, as Jake Randa’s bases-loaded sacrifice fly to left-center was dropped by Reed Trimble to allow two runs to score. Viandel Peña laced a two-run double to the left field corner to extend the lead to 4-0.

Jordy Barley’s leadoff double in the third against Gregori Vasquez (W, 3-0) was followed by a Leandro Emiliani RBI groundout to give the FredNats a 5-0 edge, but starter Michael Cuevas (L, 1-8) was unable to protect his run support. The Shorebirds got two runs back in the third on back-to-back two-out RBI singles from Connor Norby and Cowser, and scored six runs in the fourth after the first two outs were recorded. Darell Hernaiz brought Delmarva within a run with a bloop two-run single to shallow left field, and Cowser’s three-run double put the Shorebirds ahead 7-5. Coby Mayo dropped an RBI double down the right field line to score Cowser and extend the lead to 8-5.

Fredericksburg fought back in the fifth with a Randa RBI infield single, but Steven Williams was thrown out rounding third base to end the threat. Mayo hit an identical RBI double down the right field line in the sixth to give the Shorebirds a 9-6 edge.

Daniel Federman contributed 2.0 scoreless innings of relief to send the Shorebirds to the ninth with a 9-6 lead, and Rickey Ramirez (S, 4) worked around a leadoff error and unearned run to leave the bases loaded in the ninth.

The FredNats will play their final road game of the season on Sunday afternoon in the series finale against the Shorebirds. First pitch from Perdue Stadium is scheduled for 2:05, with FredNats On Deck beginning at 1:50 on the FredNats Baseball Network.

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