Syracuse, NY August 24, 2013 – The Charlotte Knights pounded out 10 hits on Saturday and beat the Syracuse Chiefs 5-4 in game three of their four-game series from NBT Bank Stadium in Syracuse, NY. The win was Charlotte’s first against the Chiefs in the series and fourth overall against the club this season.
A four-run seventh inning for Charlotte proved to be the difference as the Knights offense burst out against Syracuse reliever Ian Krol (0-1, 13.50).
The Knights began the seventh inning trailing the Chiefs by a score of 3-1. Michael Earley started the inning with a single and Miguel Gonzalez followed with a walk. Syracuse starter Yunesky Maya then struck out Marcus Semien for the first out of the inning. The Chiefs then called on Krol, who had his troubles.
Blake Tekotte drew a walk to load the bases for Brent Morel, who came through with an RBI single to pull the Knights within one run. A groundout by Travis Ishikawa tied the game as Gonzalez scored from third base. With the two teams tied at 3-3, Andy Wilkins came up big.
Wilkins, who was hitless on Friday, ripped a two-run single to right field to give Charlotte a 5-3 lead. It was his only hit of the game, but it proved to be the game-winner.
While the Chiefs tacked on one more run along the way (solo home run by Chris Rahl), the Knights were victorious for the first time over their last five games.
Santos Rodriguez (1-0, 6.08) came on in relief of starter Erik Johnson and earned the victory. Rodriguez allowed one run on one hit over two innings. As for Johnson, he gave up three runs (two earned) on three hits over five innings. Johnson walked four batters and threw 100 pitches on Saturday.
Charlotte reliever Taylor Thompson recorded the final two outs for his first Triple-A save of the season. Thompson came on in relief of Leyson Septimo, who tossed 1.1 innings. Septimo struck out two batters and did not allow a run.
Morel, Earley, and Steve Tolleson all had two hits apiece. Tolleson is currently batting .298 on the season. He added his 26th double of the season in the fourth inning.
The two teams will conclude their series on Sunday from Syracuse. RHP Jason Berken (10-12, 4.10) will start the finale for Charlotte, while RHP Caleb Clay (4-2, 2.38) will start for Syracuse. First pitch is set for 5:00 p.m.