LINCOLN — The top four hitters went 6-for-14 and the bullpen protected the lead for 3 2/3 innings as the Saltdogs (17-21) topped the Laredo Lemurs (20-17) 6-4 in front of 3,040 fans at Haymarket Park Tuesday night.
After falling behind 2-0 on a first-inning Travis Denker home run, the Saltdogs began the home first with four consecutive singles, capped off by a two-run knock to center by Kevin Howard.
Lincoln added two unearned runs in the second to take a 4-2 lead. After Laredo tied the game with two unearned tallies of their own in the top of the fifth, the 'Dogs sprung for two runs on two hits in the bottom of the fifth to take the ultimate advantage.
Trey Barham. Jhonny Montoya and Marshall Schuler combined to throw 3 2/3 innings of scoreless relief. Schuler retired the first two hitters in the ninth, loaded the bases, then struck out Devin Goodwin to end the game and earn his league-leading 11th save.
Justin Kuks (2-0) worked 6 1/3 innings, allowing two earned on six hits, striking out two and walking three to earn the win.
Chad Mozingo set the table all night for the 'Dogs, going 2-for-3 with two runs, a RBI, a walk and two stolen bases. Brian Joynt went 2-for-4 with a RBI and Howard finished 1-for-4 with three RBI.
The clubs play the series finale Wednesday night at 7:05 p.m. RHP Zachary Varce (2-2, 3.95) will square off against RHP Tyler Pearson (4-3, 3.40). Radio coverage begins at 6:35 p.m. on KFOR 1240.