BOWIE, MD – In a thrilling Friday night showdown at Prince George’s Stadium, the Bowie Baysox rallied in the eighth inning to clinch a 3-1 victory over the Altoona Curve, maintaining their pursuit of a playoff spot in the crowded second-half standings in the Southwest division.

Pitching and defense stole the spotlight in the early innings. Right-handed starter Brandon Young marked his return to Bowie’s mound with an impressive outing. Sidelined since April 2022 due to injury, Young delivered five shutout frames, allowing five hits and striking out three. The defense lent support, with shortstop Jackson Holliday initiating dazzling double plays and John Rhodes stopping a run in left field during the top of the fourth inning. Young’s performance was equally matched by Altoona’s left-handed starter Jackson Wolf, who also managed five shutout frames, limiting the Baysox to two hits.

The sixth inning saw the game’s first breakthrough. Altoona’s right-hander Ignacio Feliz walked Chavez Young, who later scored on a sacrifice fly by Tsung-Che Cheng, providing the Curve with a one-run lead. Bowie quickly responded in the bottom half, tying the game 1-1 after Dylan Beavers advanced to third on a Jud Fabian single and was brought home by a two-out single from Rhodes.

The deadlock continued until the dramatic bottom of the eighth. After both teams’ pitchers kept runs at bay, Bowie’s offensive effort was ignited by Max Wagner’s lead-off single against Altoona’s left-hander Nick Dombkowski. Following a pop-out, right-hander Oliver Garcia replaced Dombkowski on the mound. A walk to Rhodes set the stage for Silas Ardoin, who delivered a pivotal single to left field, plating Wagner and providing Bowie with their first lead of the night at 2-1. Rhodes later scored on a sacrifice fly from Maxwell Costes, extending the lead.

Left-hander Ryan Hennen, who marked his Double-A debut with a scoreless top of the eighth, secured the win (W, 1-0) by working around a ninth-inning single.

With this win, Bowie improved its overall record to 54-58 for the season and remained just one game out of a playoff position. The tension continues to mount as Bowie and Altoona have now split the first four games of their six-game series. Fans eagerly anticipate Saturday’s contest, scheduled for a 6:35 p.m. first pitch from Prince George’s Stadium.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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