CHARLESTON, SC – Luis Carpio homered for the first time in almost three years on Tuesday and the Fireflies outlasted the RiverDogs, 11-10. The game featured 21 runs and 29 combined hits. Every Firefly hitter reached base safely and even eight of nine reached base safely twice in the tilt.
Columbia (56-49) built an impressive 11-0 lead after five innings. A lead the RiverDogs nearly toppled. But the Fireflies hung on and took game two of the series. Wednesday’s clash is the rubber match of the series.
The visitors batted around in the second and third frames. After Natanael Ramos and Colby Woodmansee reached base, Ian Strom drove both in with the first of his two doubles on the night. Two batters later, Vinny Siena knocked in Strom with a single. The Fireflies scored two more times in the inning and held a 5-0 lead.
The club did it again in the third. Arnaldo Berrios slashed a base hit that scored two runs. Once Charleston (58-49) starter Nick Green (L, 7-7) walked J.J. Franco, he was pulled for reliever Austin DeCarr. Carpio was the first batter DeCarr faced and Columbia’s shortstop took him deep. Carpio slugged his first homer of the season and his first since August 11, 2014.
Dan Rizzie doubled in Carpio in the fifth and Columbia led, 11-0.
Charleston displayed some incredible resilience with an eight-run sixth inning. The home team was quiet until the ninth. Matt Pobereyko (S, 2) was on the hill for Columbia. The righty allowed a solo home run to Dermis Garcia and afterword, Steven Sensley reached on a dropped third strike. Next, Oswaldo Cabrera walked. The RiverDogs pulled within one when Carlos Vidal slapped a single up the middle. The base hit scored Sensley.
Pobereyko then slammed the door when he retired Diego Castillo on a fly out to centerfield.
Strom and Zanon each finished with three hits. Two of Strom’s three were doubles and the Hopedale, Massachusetts, native also drove in two runs.
Columbia can win the three-game series at Joe Riley Park on Wednesday. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. and the Fireflies plan to start righty Justin Brantley (0-0, 4.70). He’ll face Charleston’s right-hander Freicer Perez (7-3, 2.82).
You can listen to the action on ESPN Columbia 94.9 FM and 1230 AM, ColumbiaFireflies.com and the TuneIn Radio app starting at 6:45 p.m.