Comeback Short-Lived as SeaWolves Fall to Altoona

Erie Seawolves
Erie dropped their second consecutive game to Altoona Curve on Thursday night at UPMC Park. After Altoona plated four runs in the top of the first inning, Erie fought back to take a brief 7-5 lead in the fifth, but Altoona pushed ahead with three runs in the sixth to win 8-7. The two sides combined to hit five home runs in the game, including two by Altoona’s Mason Martin.

Altoona crushed Elvin Rodriguez on the mound. The Erie starter allowed two baserunners to start the night with a dropped third strike and a walk. Rodolfo Castro established the early tone of the game with a three run home run to right field. Mason Martin joined the attack for Altoona, going back-to-back with his own home run to right field, making it 4-0.

Rodriguez was chased after only recording two outs while Altoona sent ten batters to the plate, and Joe Navilhon cleaned things up on the mound for Erie. Navilhon pitched a season-high 3.1 innings and only allowed one hit, a solo home run by Cal Mitchell in the third inning.

Yaya Chentouf took the next three innings for Erie, but surrender his first run in Double-A during a tough sixth inning. Oneil Cruz opened the frame with a triple to center field, and scored on a single by Canaan Smith-Njigba. Mason Martin put Altoona back ahead in the contest with his second home run of the night, a two-run shot to left-center field.

Billy Lescher was the next pitcher out of the bullpen for the SeaWolves, and pitched a perfect eighth inning, while Brad Bass did the same in the ninth.

After surrendering four runs in the top of the first inning, Erie worked quickly to climb out of the hole against Altoona starter Noe Toribio. Riley Greene homered to open Erie’s half of the first inning, and Kerry Carpenter later hit a sacrifice fly to drive in Ryan Kreidler to cut the deficit to two runs. Andre Lipcius trimmed the gap even more in the third inning with another sacrifice fly. Toribio left the game early with an apparent injury after allowing Josh Lester to score on a wild pitch in the fourth inning.

Erie beat up the first reliever for Altoona, John O’Reilly. Spencer Torkelson drew a walk to open the fifth inning, and Andre Lipcius followed with a single. Kerry Carpenter doubled off of the wall in left field to tie the game at five, and John Valente singled to right field to drive in two more runs. Altoona’s bullpen reset, and shut down the Erie offense for the rest of the night while their offense took the eventual lead.

Erie and Altoona continue their series on Friday at UPMC Park, with Jesus Rodriguez making his Double-A debut on the mound for Erie. Fans can enjoy spectacular post-game Zambelli Fireworks presented by Ariens Company, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

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