The Chattanooga Lookouts recovered from an early three-run deficit, but still ended up falling to the Huntsville Stars by a score of 5-4 in front of 4,689 fans on Christmas in July Night at the ball park.
Huntsville got off to a great start against Lookouts ' southpaw, Chris Reed. With two outs in the first inning and no one on base, Hainley Statia and Nick Ramirez hit back-to-back singles to put two runners on for Joey Paciorek. The left-fielder proceeded to jack a three-run home run to put the Stars up 3-0.
In the bottom of the first the Lookouts’ offense came to the aid of Reed. Darnell Sweeney drew a lead-off walk and then Noel Cuevas singled to send him to third. Sweeney then scored on a single by Schebler and Cuevas came around to touch home plate on a groundout by Mayora.
Now only down one run, Reed settled into a rhythm and recorded a 1-2-3 inning the second. The league-leader in strikeouts finished the day only allowing those early three runs in six innings while fanning five batters. The lefty now has a league-leading 104 strikeouts on the season.
Chattanooga’s offense continued to roar to life in the bottom of the second inning when Alex Liddi hit his first triple of the season. The third baseman scored a play later when Chris O’Brien grounded out. The Lookouts’ scoring didn’t stop in the second inning as they added one more run in the third on a RBI groundout by Scott Schebler. The RBI gave the Lookouts their first lead of the game.
The team held on to the lead until the top of the seventh inning. Lookouts’ pitcher Juan Gonzalez entered the game (L, 1-6) and delivered a leadoff walk to initiate the Stars’ rally. With the bases loaded, Adam Weisenburger hit a sacrifice fly to bring home the tying run. With Hainley Statia batting, Huntsville seized the lead on a passed ball by O’Brien.
Chattanooga’s offense stalled over the next three innings to seal the win for Huntsville. Sunday is game four of the five-game series and RHP Andres Santiago (4-6, 3.13) will pitch against RHP Andy Moye (1-4, 4.91). First pitch for Sun Trust Sunday is set for 2:15 p.m. with Kids Run the Bases set for after the game.
Noel Cuevas steals second base as ball skips into center field.
- Photo2 by Tim Evearitt