Baseball: Lake Monsters Complete Sweep, Topping Lowell 4-3

Courtesy Vermont Lake Monsters

LOWELL, MA — A Joseph Pena sacrifice fly tied the game in the top of the ninth inning and a Jeremy Eierman sacrifice fly in the top of the 10th inning gave the Vermont Lake Monsters a 4-3 victory over the Lowell Spinners in New York-Penn League action Saturday evening at LeLecheur Park.

The victory was Vermont’s fourth in the last three days at Lowell, including a win in the completion of a suspended game from August 7th and a sweep of the scheduled three-game series (first three-game sweep at Lowell since July 2010). It also marks the first time that the Lake Monsters have recorded four straight wins on the road since June 19-23, 2001 at Pittsfield (although the suspended game victory goes in record book as an August 7th win).

The Spinners had taken a 3-2 lead with single runs in the seventh (Jonathan Ortega RBI triple) and eighth (Devlin Granberg RBI double) innings off Vermont reliever Bryce Nightengale. But Lowell’s Andrew Politi hit Jose Rivas to leadoff the ninth and Rivas (after moving to second on a wild pitch) advanced to third on a Max Schuemann single. After a strikeout, Rivas scored on the Pena sacrifice fly to centerfield to tie the game 3-3.

Noah Vaughan started the top of the 10th as the placed runner at second and advanced to third on Jonah Bride’s third single of the game. Eierman fell into an 0-2 hole with a swinging and called strike, but then was able to plate Vaughan with a sacrifice fly to left. The Spinners got their placed runner to third on a sac bunt in bottom 10th, but Jaimito Lebron got a strikeout and flyout to strand the tying run at third.

Vermont had taken a 1-0 lead in the third on a Jonah Bride RBI single, the Lake Monsters last hit until two outs in the eighth when Pena delivered a two-out RBI double to give Vermont a 2-1 lead. With the 3-for-4 night, Bride has now hit in eighth straight games (13-for-31, .419) raising average .254 to .286 overall.

Lake Monsters starter Adam Reuss allowed one run on five hits with one walk and two strikeouts over the first six innings, while Lebron (1-0) one hit and two strikeouts over two scoreless innings to earn his first Vermont win. Scheumann went 2-of-4 with a run, while Rivas 0-for-1 with 2 runs on 2 walks and a hit by pitch.

Spinners reliever Taylor Ahearn, who allowed six runs on four hits and five walks in one-plus innings at Staten Island in his previous appearance, gave up two runs on two hits with three walks and six strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings of work, while Granberg and Ortega both had three hits for Lowell (33-33).

After a seven-game losing streak, Vermont (33-34) has won six of its last eight games to move one game under .500 for the first time since 27-28 on August 12th. The Lake Monsters are now 3-3 in extra-inning games (1-3 on the road) and earned their second win of the season when trailing after eight innings (June 17th at Tri-City).

Vermont returns home to historic Centennial Field for a three-game series against the Brooklyn Cyclones, beginning at 5:05 pm on Sunday with the annual “Halloween at the Ballpark” trick-or-treating on the concourse starting at 4:00 pm and the traditional Sunday “Have A Catch” on the field after the game.