Hillcats sink on walkoff, lose to Carolina Mudcats, 8-7

lynchburg hillcatsThe Lynchburg Hillcats lost on a walk-off for the first second time in 2019, falling 8-7 to the Carolina Mudcats on Wednesday in extra innings.

Leading off the bottom of the tenth inning with a runner at second base, Mario Feliciano belted a walk-off two-run homer for Carolina (27-17) on the first pitch of the frame from Lynchburg’s (21-21) Jared Robinson (Loss, 0-3).

Carolina tied the game in the bottom of the eighth inning to force extras. With two out, Feliciano was hit with a pitch by Dakody Clemmer, and Devin Hairston doubled to put runners at second and third. In stepped Rob Henry, who entered the game as a defensive replacement the inning prior, and he drove a two-run double to right field to knot the game at 6-6.

Lynchburg opened the scoring with two runs in the first inning. With two out, Nolan Jones singled and Oscar Gonzalez belted a two-run homer, his third of the year, to give the Hillcats a 2-0 edge.

Carolina came back to put up a three spot in the second inning. With one out, Feliciano was hit by a pitch and Pat McInreney worked a walk. In stepped Eddie Silva, who stroked an RBI double to score Feliciano, trimming the deficit to 2-1. After McInerney scored on a wild pitch to tie the game, Hairston poked an RBI single to center to put the Muddies ahead, 3-2.

In the fourth, Carolina added another run on a bases loaded walk worked by Joantgel Segovia to go ahead, 4-2.

The Hillcats belted a pair of home runs in the fifth inning to reclaim the lead. With two out, Steven Kwan drove a solo shot beyond the right field wall, his first of the year, to bring Lynchburg within a run at 4-3. Jodd Carter reached on an infield single, and Jones followed with a two-run blast, his first of the season, to put the Hillcats in front, 5-4.

In the sixth, Gavin Collins reached on an error and scored on a Wilbis Santiago RBI double to give Lynchburg a 6-4 cushion.

In extra innings, Santiago brought home the go-ahead run on a sac fly to give Lynchburg a brief 7-6 lead before Feliciano’s walk-off blast.

Kwan, Santiago and Gonzalez each recorded three-hit games for the Hillcats. Lynchburg homered three times for the second consecutive game, matching a season high. Lynchburg now falls to 0-3 in extra inning contests.

Jean Carlos Mejia started for the Hillcats, and logged 3.2 innings. He allowed four earned runs on four hits. Anderson Polanco worked 2.1 scoreless frames in relief. Clemmer surrendered two runs in two innings and Robinson struck out the side in the ninth before giving up the walk-off blast to Feliciano.

Noah Zavolas started for the Mudcats, and allowed six runs (five earned) on nine hits over six innings. Matt Hardy worked two scoreless frames and Rodrigo Benoit (Win, 4-0) allowed an unearned run in two innings of work.

The Hillcats continue the series against Carolina on Tuesday in the second game of the four-game set. The Mudcats will send righty Braden Webb (0-0, 1.86) to the hill, while Lynchburg has not yet announced a starter. First pitch is set for 7 p.m. in Zebulon, N.C.

Max Gun will be on the air at 6:50 p.m. with the Hillcats pre-game show on TuneIn Radio and the Radio434 App.

The Hillcats return to City Stadium on Friday, May 24 for a four-game series against the Fayetteville Woodpeckers for the first-ever series between the two teams in Lynchburg. Aloha Weekend highlights include post-game fireworks shows on Friday, May 24 presented by Pepsi and Saturday, May 25 presented by MedExrpess. Saturday’s game will also be Cats Cares Night at City Stadium, where all tickets are free but fans are asked to give a donation at the box office to a pre-selected charity of their choice.

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



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