Johnson homers, finishes double shy of cycle 6-5 Squirrels loss

Richmond Flying SquirrelsThe Richmond Flying Squirrels led 5-1 through six innings, but could not hold on, losing, 6-5, in 10 innings to the Hartford Yard Goats on Thursday at The Diamond.

Hartford (41-35, 4-5) scored three runs in the top of the seventh to cut into the Richmond (28-49, 5-4) lead and tied the game with a run in the eighth before taking the lead in the 10th.

Colton Welker, an Eastern League All-Star, delivered the game-winning hit for the Yard Goats. With runners on first and third and one out, Welker hit a pinch-hit, RBI single off of Raffi Vizcaino (Loss, 0-2) down the right field line to put Hartford up, 6-5.

Relievers Tate Scioneaux, Logan Cozart (Win, 3-1) combined to hold Richmond scoreless through the seventh, eighth and ninth innings before Rayan Gonzalez (Save, 2) retired the side in order in the 10th.

The Flying Squirrels jumped on the board four pitches in to the bottom of the first when Bryce Johnson hit a solo home run over the right field fence. It was the first Double-A hit of Johnson’s career and the first first-inning leadoff homer for Richmond since Will Maddox on May 13 against Erie. The Flying Squirrels added a second run in the inning when Peter Maris walked and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Zach Houchins.

Hartford battled back in the third with an RBI single from All-Star Alan Trejo against starter Brandon Lawson to make it a 2-1 game. Lawson allowed three runs on seven hits across six innings while striking out six.

Richmond added runs in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings. In the fourth, Johnson tripled and later scored on an RBI single by Maris. In the fifth, Jacob Heyward was hit by a pitch and crossed the plate on an RBI single by Gio Brusa. The Flying Squirrels’ run in the sixth came on a solo homer from Jalen Miller, his team-leading ninth of the season.

Johnson finished the game 3-for-5 with a home run and a triple. He was a double shy of recording the first cycle in Flying Squirrels franchise history.

Lawson allowed a double and a hit a batter in the seventh before departing in favor of Tyler Cyr. He allowed an RBI single to Vance Vizcaino and later, a two-run single to Tyler Nevin that cut Richmond’s lead to 5-4.

Hartford tied the game in the eighth. Bret Boswell led off with a double and scored on a two-out, two-strike, RBI single by Chris Rabago to knot the game at 5-5.

The Flying Squirrels continue their series against the Hartford Yard Goats on Friday when right-hander Alfred Gutierrez (4-3, 4.26 ERA) is slated to start opposite left-hander Jack Wynkoop (5-8, 3.26). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. and coverage begins with the Flying Squirrels Pregame Warmup presented by Air Force Reserve on Sports Radio 910 the Fan and 105.1 FM.


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