Potomac Nationals earn split with Lynchburg

Starter Nathan Karns was excellent again for the Potomac Nationals as they defeated Lynchburg 3-1 to split a four-game series at City Stadium. Karns picked up his seventh straight win by tossing six one-run innings fanning seven.

Potomac opened the scoring with three runs in the fifth inning against Lynchburg starter Aaron Northraft who leads the Carolina League in strikeouts.  Kevin Keyes doubled with one out.  Michael Taylor reached on a low throw to first by Nick Ahmed that was ruled an error with Keyes scoring all the way from second on the play to make it 1-0 Nationals.  Potomac scored two more runs on back-to-back doubles by Adrian Sanchez and Ricky Hague to increase the lead to 3-0.  All three runs scored by Potomac were unearned.

Nationals starter Nathan Karns had faced just one over the minimum until the sixth inning when he ran into his first trouble of the contest.  Emerson Landoni hit a solo homer over the left-center fence to bring Lynchburg within 3-1– Landoni’s second homer of the season for Lynchburg.

It was the first homer yielded by Karns in over 57 innings with Potomac.  The run also snapped a 19 1/3 inning scoreless streak by Karns.

But the P-Nats bullpen tandem of Adam Carr and Neil Holland would shut the door with three scoreless innings in relief allowing just two base runners.  Holland pitched the ninth for his fourth save in four chances.

Karns (7-2) has won seven straight decisions over his last eight starts with Potomac.  He recorded seven strikeouts while walking one over six innings. Northcraft (8-8) took the loss despite not giving up an earned run.  He struck out seven and walked just one over five innings.

Over the series, Potomac scored 14 runs with just three of them being earned in four games.

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