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Lynchburg loses series finale at Myrtle Beach, 7-1

lynchburg hillcatsTaylor Murphy’s sacrifice fly in the seventh inning drove in Yu-Cheng Chang to tally the only Lynchburg Hillcats run, while Myrtle Beach used a pair of homers and a five-run fifth inning to capture a 7-1 victory in the series finale at TicketReturn.com Field Thursdaynight.

Jeremy Null (5-5) started for Myrtle Beach and held Lynchburg to one run on five hits in 6 2/3 innings. The right-hander struck out four and walked two to earn his first win against the Hillcats in three tries. Matt Esparza (2-4) allowed six runs on eight hits, both personal highs during his time with the Hillcats, to suffer the loss. Daniel Lewis and James Pugliese combined to retire all seven batters they faced out of the bullpen to end the game for the Pelicans.

Yu-Cheng Chang doubled to begin the seventh, marking the only time the leadoff batter reached in an inning for the ‘Cats.Chang advanced to third on a passed ball, which allowed Taylor Murphy to bring him home on a fly ball to left for his 53rd RBI with Lynchburg. Connor Marabell went 2-3 with a double for the only multi-hit effort for the Hillcats.

Myrtle Beach scored a run in the first inning and led throughout. Donnie Dewees tripled with one out in the frame and came home on an RBI groundout by David Bote. The Pelicans used a five-run fifth to break the game wide open. Five straight batters reached in the frame, and Bryant Flete capped off the barrage with a two-run homer to right. Bote added a solo home run in the seventh for the last run of the game.

Lynchburg ended the regular season with the best road record in the Carolina League at 42-27…The Hillcats only notched four runs on 15 hits for the entire three-game set.

Lynchburg begins its final series of the regular season Friday against Salem at City Stadium. Luis Lugo (8-4, 4.13) will start for the Hillcats at 6:30 p.m. It’s the History of Lynchburg Baseball Koozie Giveaway, and the first 1,000 fans will receive a koozie courtesy of Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham. Gates open at 5:30. Fans can listen to the action on 93.3 FM and 1320 AM as well as www.lynchburg-hillcats.com, beginning with the Hillcats On-Deck Show at 6:15 p.m.