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Pelicans Display Power with 15-5 Win over Columbia

May 17, 2022

Eight of the 15 hits were extra in the victory

Eight of the 15 hits were extra in the victory

By Sam Weiderhaft

For the fourth time this season, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans scored in double digits with a 15-5 win over the Columbia Fireflies on Tuesday night. It was the third straight win for the Birds, who now hold a 23-11 record and still sit at the top of the Carolina League South division standings. The Fireflies dropped to 11-23 with the loss.

Every hitter in the starting lineup reached base safely for Myrtle Beach with Ezequiel Pagan (2-5, HR, 3 RBI, 2 R) leading the team with a solo homer and three runs batted in. Kevin Alcantara (2-4, HR, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R, BB) hit his fourth home run of the season and brought home another run with a double. Reginald Preciado (3-4, 2B, RBI, 2 R, BB) led the Birds with three hits including a double. Six batters finished with multi-hit performances in the Tuesday night victory.

Richard Gallardo (3-1) lasted six innings for the second time this season and picked up the win with four runs allowed, two earned off three hits. Gallardo struck out a season-high seven batters with just one walk in his outing.

The Fireflies came up with just five hits for the game as River Town (1-4, HR, 2 RBI) brought home two with a homer in the first. Edgar Martinez (2-3, 2B, RBI, 2 R, BB) was the only player for Columbia with multiple hits out of the leadoff spot.

Five pitchers completed the game as reliever Samuel Valerio (0-2) took the loss by allowing five runs, four earned while collecting just one out. Valerio sacrificed three hits and walked one while failing to strike a batter out in his outing.

Columbia wasted no time getting on the board in the bottom of the first. After Martinez led off with a walk, Town hit a solo homer to left field for an early 2-0 lead just two batters in.

Alcantara quickly responded with a home run of his own with a solo shot to right-center to get the Pelicans in the scoring column.

The game broke open as the Pelicans came together for seven runs in the top of the fourth inning. Juan Mora led off with a single up the middle and James Triantos reached first on a fielding error at third base. Both runners moved up on a wild pitch and Alcantara drew a walk to load the bases. BJ Murray Jr. brought in two with a line-drive double to right field to give the Pelicans a 3-2 lead. Jacob Wetzel cleared the bases in the next at-bat with a two-run triple to right for a 5-2 Birds lead. Following Ethan Hearn’s pop-out for the first out, Preciado smacked the third extra-base hit of the inning with a double to right to bring in Wetzel. Preciado got to third on a wild pitch and came home as Pagan reached on a fielding error at second. The scoring continued after Pete Crow-Armstrong struck out for the second out of the inning. Mora came up again and walked on four pitches to put runners on the corners. Triantos followed with a liner to left for a single to plate Pagan as the Birds went up 8-2.

Two runs came in for the Fireflies in the bottom of the fifth as Erick Pena reached on a fielding error by Mora at second to start the frame. He moved to second on a groundout by Omar Hernandez and scored on a single by Daniel Vazquez. Martinez tripled two at-bats later to bring in Vazquez and cut the lead to 8-4 Myrtle Beach.

Pagan led off the top of the sixth with a monster home run over the right-field wall to put the Pelicans back up by five. It was Pagan’s third home run in his last five games. The next two batters were retired, and Triantos crushed a triple to deep center field to keep the inning going. He would score on Alcantara’s double to push the Pelicans in front 10-4.

The runs kept coming for the Birds with a four-run top of the seventh. Wetzel and Hearn were hit by a pitch and Preciado walked to load the bases. After Pagan struck out, Crow-Armstrong cleared the bases with a single to left as he went all the way to third on a fielding error by Town in left field. Crow-Armstrong scored on Mora’s double to center to make it 14-4 Pelicans.

Pagan came up with another RBI on a single in the eighth with runners on the corners to bring the Birds' run total to 15. Carter Jensen singled for Columbia in the bottom half to bring in a run and cut the deficit to 10.

Myrtle Beach and Columbia will meet for an early game on Wednesday at 12:05 p.m.