LEXINGTON, KY. — Rob Refsnyder capped a three-hit night by hitting his second home run of the game in the 11th inning, giving the Charleston RiverDogs a 10-9 victory over the Lexington Legends on Thursday night in South Atlantic League action at Whitaker Bank Ballpark.
The RiverDogs’ improved to to 64-62, while the Legends’ (67-61) losing skid hits eight games.
Refsnyder’s go-ahead solo homer, his third of the year, came with one out in the 11th inning off reliever Gabriel Garcia (1-2). Adam Smith (1-0) pitched a scoreless 10th for the win and finished the night with a perfect 11th. Refsnyder’s second homer came just two innings after he had led-off the ninth inning with a game-tying solo home run that evened the score at nine after Lexington had taken the lead with a six-run eighth.
Saxon Butler started the scoring in this back-and-forth affair in the second inning when he squared up a solo home run to left, his third of the year. Dante Bichette, Jr. (3-6, 2 RBI, run) followed with a double and he scored on a fielder’s choice for a 2-0 lead. In the bottom half, the Legends answered with a two-run inning of their own. Two singles and a walk loaded the bases and Justin Gominsky plated one run with a sacrifice fly. Jordan Scott then tied the game at two by grounding an RBI single into left.
The RiverDogs were undeterred, though, and quickly re-took the lead. Cito Culver tripled and scored on a single by Refsnyder. Two batters later, with Refsnyder now on third, Butler lifted a sacrifice fly into left for the second run of the inning. Lexington got a run back on an RBI double by Nolan Fontana, but starter Brett Gerritse wouldn’t allow anything else.
In the seventh, Ben Gamel (3-6, 2 RBI, run) and Bichette helped key a four-run Charleston rally. With the bases loaded and one out, Gamel lined a two-run single into right to extend the lead to three. Later in the inning, an identical hit by Bichette scored two more to give the RiverDogs an 8-3 advantage.
Trailing by five in the eighth, Lexington exploded for six runs to take the lead. An RBI single by Gominski (2-4, 2 RBI) and a fielder’s choice brought in the first two runs and Zachary Johnson followed with an RBI single of his own to cut the deficit to two. After another single loaded the bases, a walk to Chris Epps plated the fourth run of the inning. Fontana (2-4, 3 RBI, 2 runs) then finished the outburst with a go-ahead, two-RBI single to left for a 9-8 lead.
In the top of the ninth, though, it was the Legends that couldn’t hold the lead, as Refsnyder came up with his second, game-tying, ninth inning home run of the season, deadlocking the score at 9-9. On July 30, the right fielder tied up a game in Greenville in the ninth inning with a three-run bomb.
On Friday night, RHP Cesar Vargas (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will make his debut with the RiverDogs, facing off with LHP David Rollins (1-2, 4.42 ERA). This second game of the series is scheduled to start at 7:05 pm.
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