(7/24/2022, Central Islip, LI) The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs held on to beat the Long Island Ducks 19-16, behind 18 hits and six home runs. David Harris and Jared Walker hit two home runs, while Jack Sundberg and Zach Collier each went deep once.
The Blue Crabs got the bats going in the first inning off of Akeel Morris (L, 4-7). Michael Wielansky and Zach Collier reached before David Harris hit a three-run home run. The Ducks responded with two home runs and four runs in the bottom of the first inning off of Eddie Butler (W, 8-2).
Long Island kept the offense going in the second inning, taking a 6-3 lead behind four hits and five baserunners. From there, Eddie Butler settled down, pitching five innings and holding the Ducks to six runs.
The Blue Crabs posted one run in the third and fourth, cutting the deficit to 6-5. The Blue Crabs broke out in the sixth, scoring six runs to take an 11-6 lead. Zach Collier hit a solo home run to lead things off. Later in the inning, with the bases loaded, Jack Sundberg belted a grand slam, which was his first home run of the year, giving the Blue Crabs an 11-6 edge.
Southern Maryland extended their lead in the sixth inning. With one run already in, Jared Walker blasted his fourteenth home run of the year over the wall in the right, putting the Blue Crabs ahead 14-6. In the eighth, Walker struck again. After several singles, he destroyed a three-run homer to the right, giving the Blue Crabs a 17-6 edge.
The Long Island Ducks rallied in the bottom of the eighth inning. The Ducks hit three home runs in the inning and tallied eight hits. Dalton Geekie pitched well in the seventh but ran into trouble in the eighth before Dario Polanco entered. Polanco recorded two outs but also allowed four runs and four base runners. Cody Strayer also ran into trouble before Mat Latos (S, 22) came in to record the final out. At the end of the inning, the Ducks had cut the deficit to 17-16.
The Blue Crabs gave Mat Latos some insurance runs in the top of the ninth. Michael Wielansky walked before David Harris smashed his second home run of the game, this time over the wall in left-center, giving the Blue Crabs a 19-16 lead. . In the bottom of the ninth, Latos worked around a pair of baserunners to secure the win.
The Blue Crabs avoid the series sweep with the victory. Southern Maryland moves to 59-25 with the victory and 11-7 in the second half. The Blue Crabs are back in action on Tuesday at 6:30 pm against the Lancaster Barnstormers.