[Via email from the Montgomery Biscuits' broadcaster Jon Laaser.]
The Biscuits rescued a 5-4 victory over the Jacksonville Suns with two eighth-inning runs in front of a raucous crowd of 8,236 at the Baseball Grounds on Thursday night.
Four the fourth consecutive ballgame, the Biscuits struck first in the first inning. Suns' starter Nic Ungs walked Desmond Jennings to start the game and Jennings promptly stole second base. Rashad Eldridge then cracked a clean-single to centerfield to give the Biscuits a 1-0 lead.
The Suns answered about as quickly as they could in the bottom of the inning. Bryan Petersen lined the second pitch of the ballgame from Biscuits' starter Brian Baker just over the wall in right field for a solo-home run, tying the game at one.
The Biscuits responded in the third, as Ungs walked J.T. Hall to lead off the inning. Joe Gaetti followed with his second home run of the season, a drive over the wall in left field that put the Biscuits back in front, 3-1.
Lightning was witnessed just ahead of some heavy rain-showers prior to the start of the fourth inning and the the game went into a rain-delay for 42 minutes, before restarting at 8:34 Eastern time.
Baker came back for the Biscuits after the restart and plunked Mike Stanton with his first pitch of the fourth inning. Stanton stole second as Scott Cousins struck out, but advanced to third when Lee Mitchell singled. Chris De La Cruz trimmed the Biscuits' lead to 3-2 when he brought Stanton in with a ground out to second base.
Two walks, a wild pitch and two passed balls allowed the Suns to take the lead in the sixth inning. Baker walked both Logan Morrison and Stanton to start the inning before he was relieved by Rayner Oliveros. Oliveros struck out Cousins, but a wild pitch moved the runners to second and third base. While Mitchell batted, a passed ball scored Morrison tie the game. Oliveros struck out Mitchell, but the third strike was a second passed ball charged to Matt Spring and Stanton scored to give the Suns a 4-3 lead. Both runs were charged to Baker, who worked six-plus innings and didn't factor in the decision.
Oliveros (3-0) won for the second time in the series, ultimately working two innings of scoreless relief.
Spring would ultimately make amends in the eighth after reliever Adalberto Mendez had walked both Matt Fields and Hall with two outs. Kasey Olenberger was summoned in relief and Gaetti recorded an infield-single to load the bases for Spring. He went down two strikes, but ripped a fastball down the left-field line to score Fields and Hall and give the Biscuits the lead back, 5-4. Mendez (2-3) was tagged with the loss for Jacksonville.
Neal Frontz worked a scoreless inning in the eighth with the help of two fine defensive plays by Gaetti and Bowers before handing it off to Paul Phillips in the ninth. Phillips worked in order through the Suns in the ninth for his second save of the series.
The series finale is scheduled for 6:05 PM on Friday night at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville. RHP Jeremy Hellickson (2-1, 2.08) starts for Montgomery against RHP Willie Glen (1-7, 4.43) for the Suns.