Barnstormers Split Pair with Patriots
Josh Bell’s two-out solo homer in the bottom of the fifth inning spoiled Will Oliver’s bid for a no-hitter, but the Somerset right-hander still threw a complete game one-hitter as the Somerset Patriots gained a doubleheader split with the Lancaster Barnstormers on a 4-1 win in the nightcap Sunday afternoon at Clipper Magazine Stadium.
Earlier, Joe Gardner and Anthony Carter combined on a three-hit shutout as the Barnstormers took the opener, 2-0.
York lost the opener of a rain-delayed doubleheader at Bridgeport, leaving the Barnstormers and the Revolution in a first place tie in the Freedom Division, pending the outcome of the second game at Harbor Yard.
Oliver (6-6) walked three of the first five batters he faced but stayed out of trouble on the strength of two double play ground balls. The right-hander had retired 10 straight before encountering Bell, who slugged his fourth homer of the season to right center field.
The Somerset starter quickly settled back down, retiring the final seven batters he faced, four on strikes, finishing his performance with seven strikeouts overall.
Somerset had grabbed a 3-0 lead off Jarret Leverett (7-8) in the top of the first inning. With one out, Justin Trapp homered to right center. Newcomer Tony Thomas tripled to deep left center and scored on an infield out. Mark Minicozzi also homered for the 3-0 lead.
The Patriots’ only other run was also the result of a long ball as Kyle Roller connected off Daniel Moskos to open the sixth.
Earlier, Gardner (2-0) allowed three singles and walked five over six innings of work. Only once did the Patriots advance a runner as far as third base, that with two outs in the sixth. Gardner quickly ended the inning, retiring D’Vontrey Richardson on a fly ball to center.
Lancaster only managed five hits in the opener, but the fourth of the five was a Cole Garner home run that followed a leadoff walk to Garrett Weber in the fourth.
Carter walked one and struck out two in the top of the seventh to pick up his 29th save of the season.
The eight-game, home-and-home series concludes on Labor Day afternoon at 3:00. Lancaster will send lefty Luis Gonzalez (0-1) to the hill against right-hander Lucas Irvine (8-3). Fans may tune into the Barnstormers YouTube Channel, beginning at 2:45.
NOTES: The Barnstormers are 51-14 when scoring first…With the first game win, the Barnstormers clinched at least a .500 record for the season…They have 13 games to play…They are tied with Long Island for the best overall mark at 70-57…Garner has driven home all four runs in the Barnstormers win in the Clipper Magazine Stadium portion of this series…Lancaster sent only 44 batters to the plate in the doubleheader…The first game was played in one hour, 36 minutes, the shortest seven-inning game in franchise history.