Sand Gnats overpower RiverDogs

A three-run second inning was not enough to lift the Charleston RiverDogs over the Savannah Sand Gnats as they fell, 8-3, Thursday night in Savannah’s home opener at Grayson Stadium.

Three Savannah home runs by Stefan Sabol in the first, Pedro Perez in the fourth and Wuilmer Becerra in the seventh powered the Sand Gnats to victory. The RiverDogs scored all three runs in the top of the second.

Trailing 3-0 after the first inning, Charleston’s offense responded quickly. Austin Aune hit a double to deep center field, bringing Connor Spencer and Gosuke Katoh home to score. Two batters later, Alvaro Noriega drove in Aune with an RBI single to tie the game at 3-3.

But that would be all the offense the RiverDogs could muster in the opening game of the four-game series. Savannah scored five unanswered runs to provide plenty of support for its ace, Corey Oswalt. He went five strong and worked around the three-run second inning.

Savannah’s bullpen continued to shut down the RiverDogs for the last four innings after Oswalt (1-0) exited the game. Charleston’s offense had five hits in the first two innings, but only four in the remaining seven innings following.

Justin Kamplain (1-1) was tagged for four earned runs on five hits in four innings. The outing paled in comparison to his previous start where he shut out the Lexington Legends and only gave up two hits in six innings pitched.

South Carolina native LHP Jordan Montgomery (1-0) gets the ball for the RiverDogs against Sand Gnats LHP Brad Wieck (0-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday in the second game of the series at Savannah.