Blue Wahoos Hold On For 9-8 Win Over Chattanooga

August 31, 2022

Nine early runs were just barely enough for the Pensacola Blue Wahoos on Tuesday night, as a late Chattanooga Lookouts charge came up short in a 9-8 Wahoos win.

Leading 9-0 after 5.0 scoreless innings from starter Zach King (W, 2-4), the Pensacola bullpen allowed eight unanswered runs before Jefry Yan (S, 3) got the final out with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth.

Pensacola jumped out to an immediate 2-0 lead in the first inning thanks to a Griffin Conine sacrifice fly and Will Banfield RBI single. They added to the lead in the fourth against Lookouts starter Andrew Abbott (L, 5-7) with an RBI single from Nasim Nuñez and an RBI double from Norel González, stretching the lead to 5-0.

The Blue Wahoos added three more in the fifth and one in the sixth against reliever Myles Gayman, as Demetrius Sims hit an RBI double, J.D. Orr hit a two-run single and Conine drove in his team-leading 65th run with a fielder’s choice.

King allowed only two singles to Christian Encarnacion-Strand over 5.0 scoreless innings, but the Lookouts jumped on Blue Wahoos reliever Andrew McInvale as soon as the game turned to the bullpen. Encarnacion-Strand hit a three-run homer in the sixth and Mike Siani hit an RBI double in the seventh to cut the Pensacola lead to 9-4.

In the ninth, Sean Reynolds had a shaky outing as the Lookouts rallied to bring the game within reach. Elly De La Cruz and Encarnacion-Strand each hit RBI doubles before Yan came on and allowed a hit batsman and bases-loaded walk to bring the score to 9-8. With the tying run at third and the winning run at second, Brian Rey’s bid for a game-winning hit was foiled on a diving play by third baseman Cobie Fletcher-Vance and a scoop at first from Marcus Chiu to end the game.

The Blue Wahoos continue their series against the Lookouts on Wednesday.

by Erik Bremer, Pensacola Blue Wahoos

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