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BARNSTORMERS SQUEAK PAST FERRYHAWKS

Lancaster Completes Sweep with 7-6 Win

West Tunnell struck out the final two batters on Sunday with the bases loaded to preserve a 7-6 victory over the Staten Island Ferryhawks as Lancaster completed a three-game sweep.

The win kept Lancaster in first place by one game over Southern Maryland in the second half North race.

Tunnell retired Javier Betancourt on a 3-1 ground out to open the ninth but walked Dilson Herrera and Rusney Castillo back-to-back.  Ricardo Cespedes hit a grounder down the third base line which was flagged by Trace Loehr.  In an attempt to get a force at third, Loehr dropped the ball and was charged with the Barnstormers’ fourth error of the game.

The Lancaster closer then struck out Mauriel Bautista and Ramon Osuna, both swinging, to record his seventh save.

Lancaster took a 3-0 lead in the top of the third on a two-run single by Andretty Cordero and an infield hit by Jake Hoover that scored Jacob Barfield.  Staten Island struck back to take the lead in the fourth.  Cespedes slammed a three-run homer to right to tie the game, and Osuna singled into right to score Bautista for a 4-3 edge.

After Nile Ball ran into trouble in the fifth, the Barnstormers went to Bret Clarke (2-1), who got a quick double play out of Cespedes to keep Lancaster within one.

The Barnstormers tied the game on a bases loaded walk to Mercedes in the top of the sixth.  In the seventh, Cordero singled to center off Eric Marinez (1-3) and moved up on a bunt by pinch hitter Shawon Dunston, Jr.  Anderson Feliz singled into right center for a 5-4 lead.  Anthony Peroni followed with his second double to put runners at second and third.  A wild pitch scored Feliz and Peroni crossed the plate on an infield single by Loehr as Lancaster led by three.

Two errors created issues for Josh Graham in the eighth.  Bautista reached on a wild throw by Anthony Peroni who fielded a dribble in front of the plate.  He scored from second on a double to left center by Osuna.  Pinch hitter Joseph Monge stroked a grounder to short, but Hoover made a low throw that Cordero could not scoop, putting the tying runs aboard.  Another pinch hitter, Andres Noriega, cut the lead to one with a sac fly to left, but Graham got Antoine Duplantis to ground into a double play to close the inning.

Lancaster will head to York on Tuesday.  Cameron Gann (5-8) will make the start for the Barnstormers against right-hander Nick Travieso (5-5).  Fans may tune into the Barnstormers YouTube channel at 6:25.

NOTES:  Lancaster has won seven straight over Staten Island, five by two or fewer runs…Cordero finished July with 32 RBI…Lancaster tied a season high by drawing 11 walks in the game…Melvin Mercedes drew four of them and has now walked 60 times on the year.  The Barnstormers finished July with a 19-9 record, the best month since going 20-6 in May, 2018.