The Potomac Nationals got on the board in the Carolina League championship series with a comeback 5-3 victory in Game 2 at Winston-Salem over the Dash.
The P-Nats made a pair of comebacks, down 1-0 in the fourth and 3-2 in the eighth. Trailing by 1, the P-Nats scored three times in the eighth and then the bullpen got six outs to win the contest.
Derek Norris’ RBI blooper single to right plated Francisco Soriano to tie the game at 3. Bill Rhinehart’s sac fly scored Dan Lyons in the eighth and gave the P-Nats the lead for good. Tyler Moore’s RBI base knock made it a tworun advantage.
The Mills Cup Championship Series is even at one game apiece. Game three is set for Thursday night in Woodbridge. Jimmy Barthmaier starts game three and Marcos Frias will start game four.
Center fielder Jamar Walton smacked a two-run homer and Trevor Holder went 5 1/3 innings, scattering eight hits and allowing only two runs.
Walton’s blast off of starter Dylan Axelrod put a charge into the P-Nats bench after their game one loss.
“He was throwing a lot of stuff with sink. So I slid up in the box a little bit. He left one up. I recognized it out of his hand and I got a good piece of it,” Walton said of his dramatic homer and first runs of the series for the P-Nats.
The Emporia, Virginia native says they have been hitting the ball well the first two games of the series, but Tuesday they got timely hits to drop in.
Holder battled throughout the night to keep the Dash at bay, with most of their hits come as soft liners.
“He was an absolute bulldog,” pitching coach Paul Menhart said with tongue-in-cheek because Holder attended the University of Georgia.
“All of his pitches were working across the board. He was pounding the zone and was not afraid to throw the ball over the plate.”
Holder did not walk a batter and ended up with five strikeouts, allowing a Seth Loman solo shot in the sixth inning.
Zach Dials got the win (1-0), but allowed a triple and a run scoring single when he first got to the mound, then settled down to record five outs.
“He was typical Zach after those first two hits,” Menhart said. “He sank the ball well and had good life on his fastball.”
Pat McCoy allowed just one hit in the eighth inning, then had a 1-2-3 ninth frame for his first save of the series.