LINCOLN — The Saltdogs (7-6) split a couple decisions with the El Paso Diablos (4-8) Tuesday night at Haymarket Park, winning the resumed game from Monday 4-3 while dropping the seven-inning nightcap 7-6.
David Espinosa belted a monstrous solo home run that proved to be the winner of the series opener in the bottom of the eighth inning. The game had picked up after being suspended Monday night due to lightning.
Dennis Raben hit a game-tying home run in the sixth inning of the first game. P.J. Zocchi (1-0) worked a scoreless eighth to pick up the win. R.J. Rodriguez closed it out for his fifth save in five chances. Chandler Barnard (0-1) allowed a run in one inning to take the loss.
In the ensuing seven-inning game, the Saltdogs fell behind 4-0 early and could never quite draw back even.
After scoring four runs in the middle three innings, Lincoln got the possible tying runner into scoring position with one out in the bottom of the seventh before El Paso closer Mike Koons struck out the final two hitters to earn the save.
Adam Tollefson (1-1) pitched two innings to get the win in relief. Nate Moreau (0-2) allowed five runs on nine hits in five innings to suffer the loss.
Ian Gac went 3-for-3 with two runs. Mike Provencher went 2-for-3 with a run and two RBI in a losing effort.
The clubs play the rubber match Wednesday night at 7:05 p.m. Radio coverage begins at 6:35 p.m. on KFOR 1240.