Belcher Blasts Birthday Homer, Hoppers past RiverDogs…..

Hoppers Look for Series Sweep in Wednesday Afternoon Finale

GREENSBORO – Greensboro overcame another early deficit Tuesday to capture its third consecutive win, 7-5, over the Charleston RiverDogs. This time there was no need for dramatic endings as the Hoppers used in both Sunday and Monday’s victories.

After giving up a run in the second, Greensboro responded with three of their own in the same frame and never surrendered its lead.

Ryan Curry led off the inning with his 10th home run of the season to become the fourth Hopper with double-digit home runs this season. Four hits later and the Hoppers were on top 3-1.

Greensboro added to its lead in the third inning as when Tyler Belcher, celebrating his 23rd birthday, drove in two runs by hitting the first home run of his career.

Bryan Evans gave up three more runs to the RiverDogs before departing the game after 5 1/3 innings of work; he earned the win to improve to 1-1 with the Hoppers and struck out five in doing so.

The Hoppers’ Ozzie Martinez continued to swing a hot stick and went 3-for-5 at the plate and is now hitting .600 in Greensboro’s three games against Charleston; his average for the season cracked the .300 mark after his performance Tuesday and he currently leads the Hoppers with his .303 average at the plate.

Martinez was joined by four others in the multi-hit column as Curry, Mike Stanton, Hunter Mense and Justin Jacobs each collected two in the contest.

Charleston tried to make a come-back in the sixth inning but was denied after pulling within one. Greensboro extended its lead with two runs in the seventh and the RiverDogs, trailing by two after plating a ninth-inning run, left runners on second and third base as Corey Madden picked up his fourth save.

In all, the two teams had 29 hits to bring the series total to 88. Eight of those hits are Hopper home runs as Greensboro ran its league-leading total to 114 Tuesday; 25 long balls better than any other South Atlantic League team this season.

The win gave Greensboro its first series victory since the opening series of the second half in Lexington, Ky. It was the Hoppers’ first home series win since early June against Kannapolis.

Greensboro will look for the four-game sweep Wednesday afternoon as the Hoppers and the RiverDogs play the series finale beginning at 12:30 p.m. The Hoppers are expected to send RHP Alex Sanabia (3-3, 5.68) to the mound to face Charleston southpaw Wilkins De La Rosa (6-3, 2.26).

Postgame Quick Stats
Win – Bryan Evans (1-1); Loss – Lance Pendleton (6-6); Save – Corey Madden (4)
Time – 2:55; Attendance – 5,472
*****from Justin Stottlemyre Hoppers’ media assistant*****