LINCOLN — David Espinosa hit a walk-off single in the bottom of the 13th to give the Saltdogs (46-39) a 3-2 win over the Rockland Boulders (41-42) in front of 3,935 fans at Haymarket Park Friday night.
Yasel Gomez led off the 13th with a single to left field, and was bunted over to second by Mike Coles. Espinosa's single up the middle scored Gomez, and brought Lincoln victory to open the series.
Ian Gac gave the 'Dogs a 2-0 lead with a two-out, two-run double to right center in the bottom of the eighth. Closer R.J. Rodriguez blew just his third save in 30 opportunities as Jerod Edmondson followed a swinging-bunt single with a two-run bomb in the top of the ninth.
Danny Meszaros (3-1) worked two hitless innings of relief to earn the win. Kevin Fuqua (3-2) allowed a run on two hits in 1/3 of an inning to suffer the loss.
Stephen Bougher was magnificent, throwing eight shutout innings, allowing just three hits while striking out nine and walking two.
Both run-scoring rallies for the Saltdogs began with Gomez reaching base and Coles laying down a sacrifice bunt.
The clubs are back at it Saturday night at 7:05 p.m. for game two of the three-game interleague series. Radio coverage begins at 6:35 p.m. on KFOR 1240.