Salem Red Sox drop series opener with Lynchburg

salem red soxThe Salem Red Sox allowed three unearned runs and dropped the series-opening contest with the Lynchburg Hillcats Friday night at Calvin Falwell Field, 6-1.

Lynchburg (32-16) attacked early against Salem (31-17) starter Trey Ball, taking a lead just two batters into the game. The Hillcats would jump in front 2-0 by the time the opening frame was complete scoring on a Mark Mathias double and later, a double play.

The Hillcats tacked on two unearned runs in the third after a pair of Yoan Moncada miscues to take a 4-0 lead.

Lynchburg starter Justus Sheffield hit a blip in the fourth, when he allowed a leadoff double to Mauricio Dubon, who later scored from second base on a wild pitch to cut the lead to 4-1. Sheffield (4-1) allowed just that run on four hits in 6.0 innings, getting the aid of two double plays to stifle the Sox offense.

Ball (2-1) settled in nicely for Salem and didn’t allow a hit after the third, lasting 5.0 innings allowing four runs (two earned) on five hits, walking three and striking out five batters.

Austin Maddox relieved Ball, and retired the first seven batters he faced before surrendering a pair of runs, though just one was earned, to bloat the Lynchburg lead to 6-1.

The Lynchburg pitching trio of Sheffield, Cameron Hill and Trevor Frank combined to face the minimum, allowing just one hit, over the game’s final four innings. The one hit was an eighth-inning double for Joseph Monge, his first hit with Salem after being promoted from Greenville earlier this week. Monge was thrown out trying to stretch the hit into a triple.

The Red Sox are back against the Lyncburg Hillcats Saturday night at Calvin Falwell Field. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 pm. Salem will send Matt Kent (2-3, 4.35) to the mound, while Lynchburg counters with Mitch Brown (1-4, 5.23). Follow along with all the action on the Salem Red Sox Baseball Network. Coverage with the Pre-game Show driven by Haley Toyota begins at 6:15 pm.

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