Lynchburg Hillcats drop regular-season finale: Open Carolina League playoffs on Wednesday

lynchburg hillcatsLynchburg tied the game late but saw the game-winning run thrown out at home twice in extra innings as the Hillcats fell to the Mudcats 6-2 in 12 innings on Monday afternoon at City Stadium.



Clint Frazier gave the Hillcats an early boost when he blasted his 16th home run of the season over the left field wall in the bottom of the first inning to give Lynchburg a 1-0 lead.

AUDIO: Frazier solo home run



In the top of the second, Carlos Franco led off the inning with a walk and advanced to third on a double by Joey Meneses.Tanner Krietemeier tied the game on a RBI groundout to short that scored Franco to make it 1-all. The Mudcats took a 2-1 lead in the third. After Reed Harper and Connor Lien hit back-to-back singles to lead off the third, Sal Giardina laid down a sacrifice bunt that advanced the runners to second and third base. Dustin Peterson gave the Mudcats the lead with a RBI groundout to short that scored Harper from third.



Trailing 2-1 in the bottom of the eighth, Greg Allen reached on a walk with two outs. Allen stole second and third base, but when he took third, Giardina’s attempt to catch him sailed down the left field line and Allen was able to score from third to tie the game at two.



Lynchburg had two chances at a walk-off victory, but both came up just short. In the bottom of the 11th, LeVon Washingtonsingled and advanced to second on another base hit by Ivan Castillo. Greg Allen singled up the middle, and Washingtonattempted to score from third but was thrown out at the plate. Lynchburg tried again in the 11th as Clint Frazier singled and stole second base, but he was thrown out at the plate after a single by Joe Sever and the game remained tied into the 12th.



Dace Kime got the start for the Hillcats and turned in a quality start but didn’t factor into the decision. Kime pitched six innings and allowed two runs on six hits in his final regular season start. However, with the playoffs on the horizon, the Hillcats needed to preserve their bullpen and although four relief pitchers held the Mudcats scoreless through four innings, Joe Sever took the mound in the 12th. Reed Harper doubled off Sever with one out in the inning before Connor Lien was intentionally walked.Dustin Peterson drove in both runners to give the Mudcats a 4-2 lead. Carlos Franco hit a two-run bomb in the very next at-bat that put the Mudcats ahead 6-2.



Hillcats outfielder Greg Allen picked up two stolen bases in the loss…Allen is just 2-for-12 in three games with the Hillcats but has stolen three bases, walked twice, and has scored twice…Clint Frazier hit his 16th home run of the year for the Hillcats and was just a double shy of the cycle…Frazier tied a career-high with two stolen bases in the game as well.



Lynchburg enters the playoffs with a best-of-three series against the Wilmington Blue Rocks on Wednesday night at 6:30 p.m.Gates will open at 5:30 p.m. Fans can tune in to the action on ESPN Virginia 93.3 FM and 1320 AM as well as beginning at 6:10 p.m. for the Hillcats On-Deck Show.


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