Crushers win second straight in their final at-bat
AVON, Ohio — The Lake Erie Crushers surrendered a three run lead on Wednesday night at Mercy Health Stadium, but found a way to win in their final at bat for the second straight night, defeating the Gateway Grizzlies, 4-3.
The Crushers (26-29) have now won two straight after losing nine in a row, while the Grizzlies (24-32) saw their road record fall to 9-18 with the loss.
Lake Erie took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning when Isaac Benard belted a solo homer to left, his fifth of the season.
The Crushers tacked on two more in the bottom of the seventh inning to take a 3-0 lead. Shawon Dunston Jr. started the rally with a single. Steven Kraft was then hit by a pitch and Benard walked to load the bases. Trevor Achenbach then drew an eight pitch walk to score Dunston. Two batters later, Bryan DeLaRosa walked on four straight pitches to score Kraft.
Gateway was down to their final two outs when they rallied back to tie the game in the top of the ninth. Dustin Woodcock singled with one out and moved to second on a single from Jay Prather before Nick Rotola walked to load the bases. Connor Owings then cleared the bases with a double to the gap in left center field, tying the game 3-3.
In the bottom of the ninth inning, Benard singled to center to start the inning. Two batters later, Connor Oliver smashed a double to the gap in right center field scoring Benard all the way from first to win the game.
Daniel Kight (2-3) scored the win for the Crushers despite allowing three runs on three hits over two innings of work. Ryan Feierabend started the game and tossed six scoreless innings and struck out five while allowing five hits.
Dunston led the way for Lake Erie offensively, going 3-for-4 with a trio of singles, while Oliver turned in a multi-hit game as well, going 2-for-5.
The Crushers and Grizzlies will finish their series on Thursday evening. Lefty Paul Hall Jr. (2-3, 4.50) will start for the Crushers. The first pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM.