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Thursday, August 28, 2008

LB splits double header with OC

Game 1
Long Beach - 2

LB 000 002 0 - 2 7 1
OC 000 102 0 - 3 11 1

FULLERTON, Calif. -- In a battle of third basemen, Long Beach's Ryan Lehr two RBI fell short to his Orange County counterpart Nick Guerra, who drove in three to give the Flyers a 3-2 win at Goodwin Field in the first game of Thursday's doubleheader.

Lehr's 3-for-3 performance amounted to the lone Armada offensive highlight in a game dominated by pitching. Long Beach (23-17) battled Orange County starter Mike Natale for six innings. Natale (4-1) earned the win, giving up 2 runs on 7 hits while striking out four and walking two in 6 IP. Armada starter Ryan Claypool (7-8) took the loss for Long Beach, going 5 innings, giving up 3 runs on 10 hits and one strike out.

Both Claypool and Natale kept the bats in check early the game. The Flyers broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the fourth inning when Guerra singled to score DH Brian Rios.

The Armada failed to score until the top of the sixth inning when Lehr hit a ball over the center fielder for a two-RBI double, scoring RF Julian Williams and SS Omar Bramasco. Orange County (21-17) responded with Guerra's two-RBI single in the bottom of the sixth.

Dane De La Rose came in to earn the save for the Flyers, his 14th save of the season.

Game 2
Orange County - 1

LB 000 003 0 - 3 5 1
OC 000 010 0 - 1 6 1

FULLERTON, Calif. -- Armada starter Seth Etherton stuck out 11, and LF Dan Trumble blasted a 3-run home run in the top of the 6th to give the Armada a 3-1 comeback victory over Orange County at Goodwin Field in the second game of Thursday's doubleheader.

Etherton (1-0) earned the win in his first decision as a member of the Fleet. The former major league pitcher gave up 1 run on 3 hits, striking out 11 Flyers without giving up a walk in the 5.1 innings he pitched.

Etherton retired the first eight Flyers hitters he faced before a double by Flyers 3B Gabe Mayorga broke up the no hitter in the bottom of the 3rd inning.

Offensively Long Beach struggled to drive in runners. The Armada squandered chances in the first, second and fourth innings to score a runner on third base.

Flyers RF Mark Okano singled to score C Nick Guerra in the bottom of the 5th to give OC a 1-0 lead, a lead the Flyers would hold for only a half inning.

Armada 3B Ryan Lehr reached base (HBP) to lead off the top of the 6th, and DH Norm Hutchins laid down a bunt to sacrifice Lehr to second. After 1B Brett Flowers drew a walk from Flyers SP Jesse Smith, Trumble crushed a 1-1 pitch to left-center for a 3-run home run (10), giving the Armada a 3-1 lead.

Smith (6-2) left the game after giving up the three-run bomb, finishing the night giving up 3 runs on 4 hits, striking out 3 and walking 3 through 5.1 innings.

Sean Buller came in to relieve Etherton, facing two batters in the bottom of the 6th before Nick Cavanagh came in to shut down the OC offense. Cavanagh pitched 1.2 innings to earn the save (14).

After dropping the first game of the day, the Armada needed a win to keep pace with the St. George Roadrunners (24-17), who completed a four-game sweep in Reno of the Silversox on Thursday.

Long Beach (24-17) and St. George now have identical records atop of the GBL South. Each team has three games remaining in 2008 - St. George plays a three game series in Chico, while the Armada finish with two games and Blair Field and one more at Goodwin Field against Orange County.

Friday's Armada game against the Flyers starts at 6:35pm at Blair Field. After the game, the Armada will host its final fireworks show of 2008 presented by DeVry University.

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