The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs hosted the Gastonia Honey Hunters, but the defending first-half division champions fell short, losing 8-6 at Regency Furniture Stadium on a chilly night. The two teams had the two best records in the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB) last season.
In the first inning, the Blue Crabs scored the opening run thanks to a David Harris single into right field that drove in Michael Wielansky. The home team doubled their lead in the second inning when first baseman K.C. Hobson hit his 75th career ALPB home run.
The Honey Hunters got hot in the third inning, scoring five runs to take the lead. Their rally was capped off by a Scott Manea two-RBI single. Manea drove in two more runs in the fifth inning with a two-run homer into right-center, making it 7-2 in favor of the away team.
However, the Blue Crabs were not going down without a fight. Down 8-2 in the bottom of the fifth inning, Jose Rosario blooped a ball into right-center, driving in a run to cut the deficit. The big hit came from Jack Sundberg, who hit a line drive into left field that skipped past Steven Sensley, and two runs scored to make it 8-6.
Despite having several opportunities to tie the game, the Blue Crabs were unable to score again, and the Honey Hunters secured the win in the season opener.
The Blue Crabs have started the season with a 3-1 record and will look to bounce back in game two of the series tonight. The game will start at 6:35, and fans can purchase tickets online at SoMDBlueCrabs.com or stream the game on FloSports.