One night after missing two late chances to score in a one-run loss to the Pawtucket Red Sox, the Durham Bulls capitalized Wednesday to even the best-of-5 Governor’s Cup Final.
Vince Belnome’s one-out, solo home run in the ninth inning got Durham even, and Mike Fontenot’s single with one out in the 11th brought home the tie-breaking run as the Bulls edged Pawtucket 4-3 in Game 2 of the International League’s championship series.
Heath Hambree was brought in to pitch the ninth inning for the Red Sox, and he struck out Tim Beckham before allowing Belnome’s first postseason homer, a shot over the fence in right field. Nick Franklin followed Belnome with a single and Chris Hernandez was brought in to replace Hambree and promptly walked pinch-hitter Wilson Betemit. Pawtucket escaped further damage, though, when Fontenot grounded into an inning-ending double play.
Josh Lueke, who had come on during the bottom of the eighth, made it through the ninth and kept the score even despite allowing a leadoff double to Corey Brown.
Durham put two runners on in the 10th, but Beckham struck out swinging to end the threat.
Adam Liberatore replaced Lueke with one out in the bottom of the 10th for the Bulls and gave up two walks and a single to load the bases. Pawtucket, however, couldn’t score when Brown struck out swinging.
Game 3 of the series will move to Durham with a 7:05 p.m. start Thursday. Matt Andriese is scheduled to start for the Bulls against Henry Owens.
Wednesday’s box score
|De Jesus 2b||4||1||1||0|
E—Lavarnway. DP–Durham 1, Pawtucket 1. LOB–Durham 10, Pawtucket 12. 2B–Franklin, Brown. 3B–De Jesus. HR—Mahtook (1), Belnome (1), Brown (2). SB–Brown (1).
|Liberatore (W, 1-0)||12/3||1||0||0||0||2|
|Ely (L, 0-1)||11/3||0||1||0||3||2|
IBB-Moore (by Ely). T-4:10. A-4,116.