FARGO, North Dakota— A Leo Pina single completes a three-run comeback win in extra innings by the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks to spoil the sweep attempt from the Lincoln Saltdogs on a breezy and sunny Thursday afternoon at Newman Outdoor Field
After a quiet first inning, Lincoln utilized a walk and four hits to score three runs in the top of the second inning off Fargo-Moorhead’s starter Tyler Grauer. The southpaw’s day finished after he dealt for six innings, allowing three runs off eight hits and two walks while striking out six batters as he received a no-decision in his 10th quality start of the season.
The RedHawks responded in the bottom of the fifth inning as Sam Dexter led off the inning with a double down the left field line. He would score in the ensuing at bat as Nick Novak singled to right field for the team’s first run of the contest. After a bunt by Michael Falsetti and a flyout from Dillon Thomas that moved the runners to scoring position, Scott Schreiber hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score Dexter to make it a 3-2 ballgame through five innings.
The ’Hawks tied it in the bottom of the eighth inning as Leo Pina led off the inning with a walk and Manny Boscan moved him to second with a single to right field. He would be moved to third as Evan Alexander drew a one out walk. With the bases loaded, Dexter drew an eight-pitch walk to score Pina from third and tie the ballgame at three runs apiece. Fargo-Moorhead threatened to walk it off in the bottom of the ninth as Schreiber reached first from a hit-by-pitch, but it would be for naught as the offense could not bring him around to score.
In extra innings, both teams would put up a threat but not score a run in the 10th inning. In the 11th, Reza Aleaziz picked off a Saltdog runner at second base to swing momentum towards the RedHawks and use it as Nick Novak reached first via a bunt single that moved Dexter to third. After an intentional walk handed to Dillon Thomas, Leo Pina singled to center field to complete the comeback and walk it off with 4-3 victory.
With the win, Fargo-Moorhead avoided the sweep and put themselves back in contention for the last spot in the AAPB West Division playoff race with a 40-43 record. The RedHawks will look to continue to utilize the gained momentum as they hit the road for their last extended road trip of the season with the first stop being Legends Field to take on the Kansas City Monarchs in a four game, weekend series. The first pitch in the series opener on Friday, August 18 is scheduled for 7 p.m.