Riverdogs take series opener from Savannah 5-3

CHARLESTON, SC - Peter O'Brien (3-3, HR) and Reymond Nunez (1-4, HR) led the Charleston RiverDogs offense in a 5-3 win over the first place Savannah Sand Gnats in South Atlantic League play Monday night at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park in front of 2,746 fans.

The RiverDogs advance to 19-15 on the year with their fourth win in a row, and Charleston remains in fourth place in the Southern Division just 1.5 games behind the first place Sand Gnats who fall to 21-14 with the loss.

The Sand Gnats jumped on RiverDogs starting pitcher Luis Niebla in the top of the second inning. Maikis De La Cruz led off the inning with a double off the left field wall and then scored on a Jeff Glenn RBI single. With the bases loaded and one out, Yucary De La Cruz hit a sacrifice fly to left field that scored Cole Frenzel and made the score 2-0.

Charleston answered with one run in the bottom half of the inning on a Peter O'Brien solo homerun, his fourth of the season.

Niebla was relieved in the third inning by Adam Smith. In 2.2 innings Niebla allowed three runs on four hits with three walks and recorded two strikeouts.

With two outs in the third inning, Savannah was able to add one more run to their lead. With runners on first and second Stefan Sabol doubled to left field and scored Kevin Plawecki.

Vicente Campos (1-1) entered the game in the fifth inning in relief of Smith who allowed no runs and only two hits in 1.1 innings of work. Campos threw four shutout innings on only one hit and three strikeouts en route to the win.

Charleston's Yeicok Calderon tied the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the sixth inning with a two run blast over the right field wall. It was his fourth homer of the year, his second in three games, and he has now recorded a hit in seven of the last eight games.

Starting pitcher Luis Cessa was impressive for the Sand Gnats. In six innings of work he allowed three runs on fives hits and also struck out four batters. He was relieved in the seventh inning by Julian Hilario and was not a factor in the decision.

The RiverDogs took their first lead of the game in the bottom of the eighth inning. Following a Peter O'Brien double, Reymond Nunez untied the game and put Charleston on top 5-3 with a two run home run over the left field wall. It was his fourth of the season and his third in as many games.

Campos was relieved in the ninth inning by Alex Smith. Smith pitched a scoreless inning and earned his first save of the season and helped Campos pick up his first win.


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