ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Saltdogs (23-36) rallied for three runs in the eighth to come back and beat the St. Paul Saints (46-14) 6-5 in front of 8,879 fans at CHS Field Friday night.
Trailing 5-3 through seven, Curt Smith clocked a double to right center to open the eighth. After Steve Tinoco singled him in and Mike Gilmartin hit a sac fly to tie the game, Aaron Payne delivered a clutch, two-out RBI single to put Lincoln in front.
Marshall Schuler surrendered a lead-off double in the ninth but buckled down to earn his second save of the season, peppering the radar gun with 95 m.p.h. fastballs.
Kevin McGovern (4-4) worked seven innings, with 132 pitches, and allowed five runs with six strikeouts and six walks to earn the win.
Conor Spink pitched a hitless eighth inning to hold the lead.
Smith went 3-for-5 with a double, triple and two runs; Tinoco went 2-for-4 with two runs and an RBI; Ryan Wiggins went 3-for-4 with three doubles and three RBI; Payne went 2-for-4 with an RBI.
Six of Payne’s seven professional RBI have given the Saltdogs the lead.
Chris Peacock (2-1) allowed three runs in 1 1/3 inning out of the bullpen to suffer the loss.
Game three of the four-game set is Saturday night at 7:05 p.m. RHP Shairon Martis (4-2, 3.71) will face RHP Jeff Shields (9-0, 3.04). Radio coverage begins at 6:35 p.m. on KFOR FM 103.3/1240 AM.