KANNAPOLIS, N.C. – The Down East Wood Ducks wrapped up their six-game series with the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers with a 7-1 win, Sunday afternoon.
The Wood Ducks offense flexed their muscles as they scored at least one run in all but two innings.
Down East (56-39) took the lead in the top of the first after Kannapolis starter Jared Kelley was removed from the game after two batters. Jayce Easley led off with a walk, advanced to second on a groundout by Daniel Mateo. After Kelley was removed from the game, Easley stole third (55) and scored on a single by Luisangel Acuña.
The Wood Ducks added to their lead in the top of the second. Cody Freeman walked and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Xavier Valentin struck out swinging but advanced to second on a throwing error by catcher Kleyder Sanchez, while Freeman moved on to third. With runners on first and second, Angel Aponte grounded out and Freeman scored on the play to increase the lead to 2-0.
The bats continued to go to work for the Woodies in the top of the third. With two outs, Acuña singled and stole second (35). Yenci Peña entered as a pinch-runner for Acuña after the stolen base and then scored on a single by Keyber Rodriguez.
Kannapolis (27-69) cut into the deficit with a run in the bottom of the fourth to make the score 3-1.
Down East continued to control the game as they increased their lead in the top of the fifth. With two outs, Peña reached second on a fielding error by Kannapolis first baseman Harvin Mendoza. Rodriguez worked a walk to put runners on first and second. Freeman singled to bring home Peña to give the Wood Ducks a 4-1 lead.
Runs continued to cross the plate for the Woodies in the sixth inning. Angel Aponte singled and went to third on a single by Jose Acosta. After Acosta stole second (7), Keithron Moss doubled to score both Aponte and Acosta to push the Down East lead to 6-1.
After only the second scoreless inning of the day for the Wood Ducks in the seventh, they went back to work in the eighth inning. With one out, Moss walked and stole second (13). Easley singled to right field and with Moss running on the pitch, he scored the seventh run of the day for Down East.
Owen White took the no-decision, pitching four innings while allowing one run on three hits with one walk and three strikeouts. Connor Sechler (W, 2-0) earned the win as he pitched two scoreless innings out of the bullpen, allowing one hit with three walks and three strikeouts. Eudrys Mañon pitched a scoreless 1 2/3 innings with one hit allowed and one strikeout. Mason Cole wrapped up the game, pitching a scoreless 1 1/3 innings with one walk.
With an off-day Monday, the Wood Ducks return to action on Tuesday to start a two-week homestand starting with the Fayetteville Woodpeckers. The starters for that series have not been announced.
Fans can purchase tickets on woodducksbaseball.com, by calling the Wood Ducks Team Offices at (252) 686-5164 or in the Wood Ducks Team Offices located at Grainger Stadium (Mon-Fri – 9 am – 4 pm). Make sure to follow your Down East Wood Ducks on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook so you don’t miss anything!