Dayton, OHIO (WDTN) – Three Dayton pitchers combined to scatter seven hits and Jose Tello hit a home run to lead the Dragons to a 4-2 victory over the Lansing Lugnuts on Thursday night at Day Air Ballpark. The win snapped a brief two-game losing streak for the Dragons and improved their record to 6-3 on the year.
Dragons starting pitcher Graham Ashcraft (1-0) earned the win, striking out a career high nine batters in five and one-third innings. He became the first Dayton pitcher to go beyond five innings this season, allowing five hits and two runs (one earned) with one walk.
Jacques Pucheu (pronounced PEE-shoe) followed Ashcraft and retired eight of the nine batters he faced, allowing no hits while striking out three in a middle relief role. Francis Peguero tossed a scoreless ninth inning for his first save, allowing a pair of hits that put the tying run on base with one out before notching a strikeout and a game-ending ground out.
The Dragons scored two runs in the first inning to take an early lead. Michael Siani drew a walk to start the rally and scored from first on Quincy McAfee’s double to the fence in right-center field. McAfee went to third on a base hit by Victor Ruiz and scored on Quin Cotton’s sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.
The Dragons extended their lead in the third on a solo home run to left field by Tello (TAY-oh), his first homer of the year, to make it 3-0.
Lansing scored one run in the fourth inning and one in the sixth to make it 3-2. The Dragons added an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth that was manufactured by Quin Cotton without a ball being put in play. Cotton walked, stole second, stole third, and scored on the same play when the catcher’s throw to third sailed into left field.
The Dragons nine-hit attack was led by Tello, with two hits including the home run. Victor Ruiz and Jonathan Willems also had two hits for Dayton.
The Dragons remained in a first place tie with Lake County (6-3), one game ahead of Lansing.
The Dragons will host Lansing again on Friday at 7:05 p.m. in the fourth game of the six-game series at Day Air Ballpark. Spencer Stockton, who pitched out of the bullpen in his first appearance of the year and earned a win with four and one-third scoreless innings, will start for the Dragons against Lansing’s Colin Peluse (0-0, 0.00).
The game will be televised on Dayton’s CW (Channel 26; Spectrum Cable Channel 13 or 1013). It can be heard on radio on WONE 980 AM or via the Dragons Mobile App.
Notes: Dayton second baseman/outfielder Brian Rey was named the High-A Central League Batter of the Week for the first week of the season, when he belted a league-high four home runs and drove in 12 runs while batting .333.