Loons overcome 5-1 deficit, top Dragons

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DAYTON, Ohio – The Great Lakes Loons overcame a four-run deficit to defeat the Dayton Dragons 7-5 on Friday night.  The Loons evened the four-game series at one win apiece before a crowd of 7,831 at Fifth Third Field. 

Dayton scored five runs in the second inning to take a 5-1 lead, but did not collect another hit until there were two outs in the bottom of the ninth.  Meanwhile, Great Lakes scored two runs in the third, three in the seventh to take the lead, and one more in the ninth. 

The Dragons had a chance in the bottom of the ninth inning after the first two batters in the inning were strikeout victims.  Shard Munroe walked and Jay Schuyler lined a double to left field to move Munroe to third.  With the tying run at second and two outs, Loons reliever Jasiel Alvino got Dayton’s Pabel Manzanero to pop out to shallow right-center field to end the game. 

After Great Lakes scored one run in the top of the second inning, the Dragons matched their biggest inning of the year to take the lead with five runs in the bottom of the second.  Juan Martinez got the inning started with an infield single and scored from first on a double down the left field line by Jonathan Willems.  Reyniel Ozuna walked to put men at first and second.  Carlos Rivero hit a fly ball to center that Loons outfielder Chris Roller had for a moment with a diving try, but Roller lost control of the ball as he rolled over.  Roller’s throw to third skipped off the glove of Miguel Vargas, allowing Willems to score as Ozuna went to third and Rivero wound up at second.  Mariel Bautista followed with a single to center to drive in Ozuna and make it 3-1.  Bautista stole second, and Schuyler followed with a single to center to drive in both Rivero and Bautista to make it 5-1. 

Great Lakes pulled closer in the third, getting a two-run home run from Jair Camargo to make it 5-3.  In the seventh, they scored three runs against Dragons reliever Matt Pidich (0-1) to take a 6-5 lead.  The tie-breaking run came on a two-out bases loaded walk. 

Dragons starting pitcher Ricky Salinas, in his Midwest League debut, worked four innings, allowing three runs on six hits with one walk and five strikeouts. 

The Dragons finished with seven hits, including five in the second inning.  Schuyler led the way, going 2 for 4 with a double, walk, and two runs batted in to raise his batting average to .353.  Bautista was 2 for 5 with an RBI. 

Notes:  Schuyler is 8 for 12 (.667) with six RBI over his last three games…The Dragons have held the lead in 18 of their 21 games.  Six of their 13 losses have come in games that they led by at least two runs at some point during the game.  They have lost two games in which they led by four runs, two others when they led by three runs, and two when they led by two runs.  The Dragons bullpen has been charged with seven blown saves, most in the league. 

Up Next:  The Dragons (8-13) and Loons (9-12) meet again on Saturday at Fifth Third Field on Saturday night at 7:00 p.m. in the third game of the series.  Jhon De Jesus (1-1, 3.32) will start for Dayton against Andre Jackson (1-1, 4.60).  The series will conclude on Sunday afternoon at 2:00.  Games both Saturday and Sunday will be televised on Dayton’s CW (26). 

On the Air:  All Saturday and Sunday home games are televised on Dayton’s CW (channel 26; Spectrum cable channels 13 and 1013).

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