Hillcats rally from four down, top Carolina Mudcats

Lynchburg HillcatsThe Lynchburg Hillcats used a three-run home run by Luke Wakamatsu in the sixth inning to propel them to a 6-4 victory over the Carolina Mudcats.

The Hillcats (19-18) collected 13 hits in the win over Carolina (23-16) while avoiding any strikeouts at the dish.

The Mudcats got the scoring started immediately in the top of the first inning. Joantgel Segovia cracked a leadoff single and later stole second to get himself into scoring position. After Tristen Lutz singled his way aboard, an RBI double by Payton Henry scored Segovia for the first run of the ballgame. A Mario Feliciano groundout plated Lutz and gave Carolina a 2-0 advantage.

The two pitching staffs cruised through the next three frames without incident, until the Mudcats piled on to their lead in the top of the fifth. Eddie Silva got the inning started with a leadoff double, and a single by Devin Hairston advanced him to third base. Segovia singled in Silva and Ryan Aguilar knocked in Hairston to add two more runs to the Mudcats’ ledger, who led 4-0.

In the bottom of the fifth inning, the Hillcats struck back. Wilbis Santiago got aboard with a single, and Jose Vicente followed suit with one of his own. Luke Wakamatsu came to the dish, crushing a fly ball over the right field fence for his third round-tripper of the season, scoring three on the play to cut the Mudcats lead to 4-3.

In the sixth inning, Trenton Brooks hit a one-out single. Santiago pushed him to second with a single of his own, and Vicente drove Brooks in with an RBI single to tie the game at 4-4.

The Hillcats then got into the Mudcats bullpen in a tie ballgame in the seventh inning. Steven Kwan started off the frame with a leadoff single and reached second base on a throwing error by Carolina first baseman Aguilar. Jodd Carter’s RBI triple broke up the tie, and Carter came in on a Nolan Jones sacrifice fly to give Lynchburg a 6-4 lead that it would never relinquish.

Kwan and Gonzalez each recorded three-hit games on Wednesday.

Jean Carlos Mejia, making his first start for the Hillcats since April 16 after missing time due to an abdominal issue, got through three innings while giving up two earned runs on four hits while striking out five. Brennan Bernardino (Win, 1-1) threw four innings in relief while allowing one earned run on four hits and a walk, collecting three strikeouts. Jonathan Teaney and Anthony Gose (Save, 2) threw two hitless innings to shut down the Mudcats bats in the final frames.

Noah Zavolas, who entered the game leading the Carolina League with a 2.36 ERA, allowed four earned runs on 10 hits in six innings of work. Cody Beckman (Loss, 2-1) tossed one inning while allowing two runs to score against him. Chris Dula threw a scoreless eighth inning while walking one. The Mudcats pitching staff recorded no strikeouts in the game.

The Hillcats will look for the series win on Thursday. Braden Webb (0-0, 1.80) will take the mound for the Mudcats in his second Carolina League start of the season. Anderson Polanco (0-1, 4.00) will make his first start of the season after coming out of the bullpen for his first 10 appearances. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m.

Max Gun and Anders Jorstad will be on the air at 6:20 p.m. with the Hillcats pre-game show on TuneIn Radio and the Radio434 App.

Homestand highlights include Aloha Weekend with a postgame fireworks show on Saturday, Kids Eat Free Tuesday, Winning Wednesday, and Thirsty Thursday. Additionally, Hillcats vs. Cancer is on May 17, Pirates vs. Royalty Night is on May 18 and Cats Cares Night is on May 25, where all fans can enter the game for free but are asked to give a donation at the box office of their choice to a pre-selected charity.

For tickets or more information, visit lynchburg-hillcats.com, call 434-528-1144, or visit the City Stadium box office.



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