LINCOLN — Curt Smith clubbed two home runs and C.J. Ziegler delivered a game-winning double as the Saltdogs (32-59) walked off to beat the Sioux Falls Canaries (34-57) 7-6 in front of 4,260 fans at Haymarket Park Friday night.
Trailing 6-5 heading into the bottom of the ninth, Matt Forgatch was hit by a pitch on the elbow in a two-strike count. After stealing second, Aaron Payne hit a ball by the shortstop to score Forgatch.
Two batters later, Ziegler launched a ball high into right center, inducing a collision near the wall to allow Smith to score from first and end the game.
Zac Westcott (5-2) pitched two hitless innings of relief to earn the win. Chase Johnson (5-2) allowed two runs on one hit, blowing the save and suffering the loss.
Smith finished 2-for-3 with two home runs and three RBI. It was the first multi-homer game by a Saltdogs player this season, and Smith matches his career high with 12 long balls.
Eight of Lincoln’s 18 home victories in 2015 have been decided in walk-off fashion.
Game three of the four-game series is Saturday night at 6:05 p.m. RHP Chase Cunningham (0-2, 4.28) is expected to face RHP Stephen Bougher (4-5, 4.20). Radio coverage begins at 5:35 p.m. on KFOR FM 103.3/1240 AM.
The final home stand fun continues at 4 p.m. Saturday with BBQ & Baseball! Enjoy all-you-can-eat ribs and pulled pork, plus a lower reserved ticket to the game for just $20 ($15 for kids 12-and-under). Get your package now at www.saltdogs.com/bbq.