WALDORF, Md. – The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs defeated the Newark Bears 4-3 Wednesday night at Regency Furniture Stadium in Waldorf, Maryland.
Shane Youman and Dan Reichert each looked strong on the hill for the Bears and ‘Crabs in a game that saw just seven combined runs and 14 hits. The Bears took advantage of Reichert early as Tim Raines Jr. started the game drawing a four pitch walk. A wild pitch and a Kennard Jones sacrifice pushed him over and Elijah Dukes, the third batter of the game, doubled down the right field line to bring Raines home and it was 1-0 Newark.
Raines started third with a single, stole second and again moved to third on another Jones sacrifice bunt. Dukes put a ball into right for a sacrifice fly and picked up his second RBI plating Raines to push the lead to 2-0.
Youman allowed a four-pitch walk to start his night, but settled down and retired six in a row and eight of the next nine batters he faced, while striking out five over the next three frames. A strikeout and wild pitch put a runner on for Eric Crozier in the fourth. Crozier promptly blasted a two-run shot out to center to tie the game at 2. Ben Harrison put the ‘Crabs ahead two batters later with a RBI double and it was 3-2 Southern Maryland. Jamar Hill help add an insurance run in the fifth as he led off the inning with a triple and came home on a Jeremy Owens’ sacrifice fly.
Reichert stymied the Bear bats from the third inning on, retiring nine straight at one point. He surrendered just three hits, while striking out five over the next four and one-third innings. With two-out in the eighth against reliever Ryan Speier, the Bears pulled within a run as Carl Everett drilled his ninth home run of the season onto the grass berm in right. Kennard Jones drew a two-out walk in the ninth, but closer Jim Ed Warden shut the door and completed a four-out save, his 22nd on the season.
Reichert (13-7) secured the win, a watermark in the Atlantic League, allowing just two earned and scattering nine hits, with five strikeouts. Shane Youman (1-1) took the loss, firing six innings of four hits, four run baseball, while striking out a season-best eight. Derek Blacksher and Armando Benitez combined for scoreless innings of relief with four strikeouts for Newark.
The series wraps up in Waldorf as the Bears and Blue Crabs play the fourth game of the series Thursday night. Game time is set for 7:05 p.m. at Regency Furniture Stadium. Fans can tune into all the action at www.newarkbears.com with David Greenwald providing the play-by-play.
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