The Connecticut Tigers scored first but the Lowell Spinners answered with five runs in the bottom half of the inning and cruised to their fourth straight win and their eighth win in eight games over the Tigers, 6-2, Monday night at LeLacheur Park.
The win, coupled with a Tri-City ValleyCats loss, pushed the Spinners back into first place in the Stedler Division, a half game ahead of the ValleyCats.
Connecticut (27-32) got the scoring started with a run in the first after a leadoff single by Curt Powell, coming around to score on a one-out double by Dominic Ficociello to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead.
Lowell (34-23) quickly retook the lead in the bottom half of the inning. Forrestt Allday was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and three straight singles from Deiner Lopez, Kevin Mager and Danny Bethea tied the game at one. An Aaron King sacrifice fly brought hoe Lopez and a two-run double by Carlos Asuaje gave the Spinners a 4-1 lead. Nick Moore would extend his hitting streak to 10 games with an RBI single to extend the lead to 5-1.
The Tigers would cut into the lead to three with a run in the sixth inning, taking advantage of a leadoff bunt single by Austin Schotts. After Schotts moved to third on a wild pitch, a Ben Verlander groundout brought him in to cut the lead to 5-2.
The Spinners would get that run back in the seventh on an RBI single from Bethea and Joe Gunkel locked down the win there for a 6-2 final.
Sea Dogs beat Fishercats
Adam Loewen drove home Andy Burns on two occasions on Monday night, but three errors plagued the Fisher Cats (62-64) in a series-opening 3-2 loss to the Portland Sea Dogs (61-66). The loss allows the Sea Dogs to pull with 1.5 games of New Hampshire in the chase for the Eastern Division Wild Card. The Fisher Cats remain in third place behind the Trenton Thunder, who were still playing at press time.
Both teams traded runs in the fourth inning to break a scoreless tie. Adam Loewen gave the Fisher Cats the lead first by plating Andy Burns with a groundout to second base. In the bottom of the inning, the Fisher Cats gave the Sea Dogs two runs by committing three consecutive errors to begin the inning.
Chad Jenkins left after the error-plagued fourth, allowing two unearned runs over four full frames. He gave up four hits, struck out four, and didn’t issue a walk for the second straight outing.
Burns and Loewen figured into the game-tying rally in the sixth. Burns single, stole second, and then took third on a fly ball. Loewen delivered him home with a single to right field to tie the game at 2-2.
But, as they had in the fourth, Portland wasted no time retaking the lead. Facing Randy Boone, Michael Almanzar started the inning with a single. A one-out hit and a hit batter loaded the bases before Almanzar scored on a force out to put Portland on top, 3-2.
Lefty Chris Hernandez kept Portland in front through eight innings, retiring the final seven men he faced after Loewen’s run-scoring hit in the sixth. He allowed two runs on seven hits, issuing just one walk with three strikeouts.
Burns finished the night 2-4 to extend his hitting streak to a season-best ten games. Loewen drove in both runs for New Hampshire to raise his RBI total to 50.