GAME ONE FINAL:
Blue Crabs 2
Ducks Lead Series 1-0
I - Ducks 6; Blue Crabs 2
II - Thursday @ Long Island
LONG ISLAND DUCKS: John Brownell Strikes Out Twelve Blue Crabs, Setting A New Long Island Ducks Playoff Record.
The Long Island Ducks hosted Game One of the Liberty Division playoffs this evening. Pitcher John Brownell climbed the hill for the home team, opposed by Southern Maryland's Gaby Hernandez.
The Ducks got on the scoreboard first. Doubles by Bill Hall and Ryan Strieby gave Long Island a 1-0 lead after two. The Blue Crabs tied the game in the top of the fourth, but Long Island came right back to retake the lead in the bottom of the frame on Ramon Castro's sac-fly with the bases loaded, and Ryan Strieby's second RBI of the game.
Blue Crabs center fielder Jeremy Owens homered in the top of the sixth to make it a 3-2 game. But, Bryant Nelson went deep in the bottom of the frame to help Long Island regain a two run lead again. Then in the bottom of the seventh, Josh Bailey's solo home run cleared the double-wall in right field to give the Ducks a 5-2 advantage.
Through six full innings, Gaby Hernandez allowed five earned runs on eight hits. He walked one and struck out five before being relieved by Kyle Mertins in the bottom of the seventh. For Long Island, John Brownell was still solid through seven innings pitched, allowing two earned runs on six hits. He walked no batters and struck out nine.
In the top of the eighth, John Brownell returned to the hill to fan his tenth and eleventh batters of the game - a new Long Island Ducks playoff record. Former Ducks pitcher Mike Loree holds Long Island's regular season strikeout record. With two outs, the Blue Crabs broke Brownell's string of ten straight retired batters.
The Ducks faced reliever Wade Korpi in the bottom of the eighth. Then after retiring the lead-off batter, Southern Maryland turned to pitcher Tim Redding, who immediately allowed three straight base hits. Dan Lyons' single scoring Ryan Strieby gave Long Island a 6-2 lead.
Down by four runs, Southern Maryland faced Long Island's starting pitcher John Brownell once again in the top of the ninth inning. Brownell finally issued his first walk of the game, but with two outs in the inning, John Brownell completed a complete game victory when he fanned Sean Smith looking at strike three - his twelfth strikeout of the game; a new team playoff record. In going the distance, John was charged with two runs on seven hits, and walked one batter.
First baseman Ryan Strieby was 4 for 4, with a double, three singles, and two runs batted in.