Dayton, Ohio (WDTN) —Four Great Lakes pitchers combined to allow just five hits as the Loons defeated the Dayton Dragons 2-1 on Tuesday night at Fifth Third Field before a crowd of 8,763. The Loons avoided a sweep in the series and cut the Dragons wildcard lead to one-half game with six games to play.
The Loons took a 1-0 lead in the second before the Dragons tied the game in the third. The Dayton rally began with a single to left-center field by Jonathan Reynoso followed by a bunt single by Ronald Bueno. With Nick Benedetto at the plate, Reynoso stole third and scored on the same play when the throw by the catcher skipped into left field.
Great Lakes pulled back ahead in the sixth when Devin Ahart doubled down the right field line, went to third on a sacrifice bunt, and scored on Paul Hoenecke’s sacrifice fly to deep center to make it 2-1. The Dragons could not advance a runner past first base over the rest of the night.
Dragons starting pitcher Jackson Stephens (2-6) was charged with the loss. He worked six innings, allowing four hits and two runs with one walk and two strikeouts. Reliever Tony Amezcua followed Stephens and was outstanding, retiring all nine batters he faced.
Ronald Bueno was 2 for 3 to lead the Dragons offensively. He had a double, the only extra base hit of the night for the Dragons.
Great Lakes starter John Richy worked the first four and two-thirds innings, allowing three hits and three walks with one run. The Loons bullpen, including Mark Pope, A.J. Venegas, and Jacob Rhame, combined to work the final four and one-third innings, allowing just two base runners and no runs.
The Dragons (29-34) open a new three-game series against the Lansing Lugnuts (27-36) on Wednesday at 7:07 p.m. Nick Howard (1-1, 4.56) will start for the Dragons against Starlyn Suriel (2-3, 2.84). The game will be televised on WHIO Digital Channel 7.2 (Time Warner Cable channels 23 and 372).
All Dragons games can be heard on WONE Radio (980 AM) and via the internet at wone.com and through the Dragons Mobile App.