SAVANNAH, GA - The Charleston RiverDogs limited the Savannah Sand Gants to just two runs on nine hits as the RiverDogs topped the Sand Gnats 4-2 Wednesday evening in a pitchers' duel at Historic Grayson Stadium in South Atlantic League action.
With the victory, the RiverDogs improve to 26-17 overall and remain in sole possession of first place in the Southern Division standings. With the loss, Savannah drops to 25-19 and falls into third place in the Southern Division standings.
RiverDogs starter Evan Rutckyj looked solid on the mound as he went four innings and allowed a run on four hits and struck out one. Rutckyj was relieved by fellow lefty Dietrich Enns (2-0) who picked up the win in his three innings of work. Enns allowed just three hits and struckout a season best six batters without allowing a run. Phil Wetherell came in to pitch the eighth and Ben Paullus pitched the ninth and allowed a run to earn his first save of the season.
Offensively for Charleston, they jumped on Savannah's starter Rainy Lara early. Jake Cave led the game off with a single and would later come around to score on a RBI single by Dante Bichette Jr. Bichette Jr. (2-for-4), extended his hitting streak to a season best eight games with his RBI single. Peter O'Brien saw his 10-game hitting streak come to an end with a 0-for-3 night, but he did reach base on a walk and a hit by pitch and scored two runs for the RiverDogs.
The RiverDogs second run of the night came in the fourth inning as Yeicok Calderon doubled to lead things off and would later score on an error by 3B Jeff Reynolds. Taylor Dugas had an RBI single plating Peter O'Brien in the fifth inning for the third run of the game and the RiverDogs final run came in the seventh on a bases loaded RBI single by Kelvin DeLeon.
Savannah starter Rainy Lara (4-2) took the loss for the Sand Gnats in a rare rough outing. Lara came into the game with a 4-1 record an ERA below one and a half. His final line was 4.2 innings and allowed three runs, two earned on seven hits and four strikeouts with one walk. Lara was relieved by Taylor Vanderheiden who went 1.1 innings and allowed a run on one hit with two walks. Beck Wheeler came in for Vanderheiden and went the rest of the way allowing no runs on a pair of hits.
The Sand Gnats first run came in the fourth inning thanks to a Jeff Reynolds RBI double that scored Stefan Sabol, Savannah made it interesting in the ninth as Phillips Evans singled and later scored on a RBI single by Kevin Plawecki. The Sand Gnats couldn't push anymore runs across as they left the tying runs as base to end the ninth. Kevin Plawecki led Savannah going 3-for-4 at the plate with three singles and an RBI.