[Via email from the Montgomery Biscuits' broadcaster Jon Laaser.]
The Tennessee Smokies salvaged a series split with the Biscuits by holding on for a, 6-5, win on Saturday night at Riverwalk Stadium in front of 6,501.
The Smokies struck first against Biscuits' starter Jeremy Hellickson, as Hellickson conceded runs in the first inning for the first time on the season. The Smokies plated a pair with James Adduci starting the rally with a one-out single. Hellickson then walked Doug Deeds. A wild pitch from Hellickson moved both runners up and Marquez Smith scored them both with a two-out single just past Drew Anderson at second base for a 2-0 lead.
The Biscuits got one run back off Smokies' starter Jay Jackson in the bottom of the inning. Jackson walked Desmond Jennings to start the inning and a batter later Rashad Eldridge singled him to second. The Biscuits then staged a successful double-steal with Jennings grabbing third base. He scored on a ground out from Fernando Cortez to cut the lead to 2-1.
Hellickson, working on a limited pitch count, recovered to work five innings, the two runs in the first the only damage incurred. He allowed four hits while walking one and striking out six.
Montgomery wrestled the lead away and chased Jackson in the fifth inning. Nevin Ashley led off with a double, but was out trying to take third on a ground ball from Jason Bowers. Bowers reached on the fielder's choice. Jennings singled and Bowers advanced to third before scoring on a fielder's choice on the ground from Anderson. Rashad Eldridge walked and Fernando Cortez gave the Biscuits a 3-2 lead with an RBI single to score Anderson. That single chased Jackson, who worked 4 2/3 innings and allowed three earned runs on five hits and four walks.
The Smokies swung the game back in their favor in the sixth inning with three runs to reclaim the lead. With Ryan Morse on in relief of Hellickson, Deeds doubled with one out. Tyler Colvin followed with an RBI single to tie the game, 3-3. Morse was lifted for Ryan Reid, but Smith singled to greet him. Reid walked Lalli to load the bases ahead of a pair of RBI singles for Ty Wright and Mark Reed.
The Biscuits got a run back in the seventh inning when Cesar Suarez singled in Drew Anderson, but the Smokies plated the run back in the ninth when Darwin Barnery homered off of Neal Frontz.
With the Biscuits trailing 6-4 going to the bottom of the ninth, the Smokies turned to closer Brian Schlitter. Anderson led off the inning with a solo-home run, and the Biscuits loaded the bases with two outs, but Schlitter struck out Ashley to end the ballgame and earn his 12th save of the season.
Jake Muyco (2-1), who worked in relief, earned the win for Tennessee over an inning and a third. Morse (2-6) was tagged with the loss for Montgomery.
The Biscuits will open a six-game, six-day series against the Jacksonville Suns at 4:05 PM on Sunday at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville. RHP Chris Mason (3-4, 6.05) will make the start for Montgomery against RHP Willie Glen (1-7, 4.73) for Jacksonville.