LINCOLN, Nebraska – Zak Taylor hit a go-ahead single in the 7th inning, Carson Lance struck out three consecutive hitters after the bases were loaded with nobody out in the 8th, and the Saltdogs held on to beat the Houston Apollos 2-1 at Haymarket Park on Tuesday night.
Taylor’s single gave Lincoln (36-32) the lead in the 7th, and after Lance struck out three Apollos after Houston (9-59) loaded the bases with nobody out in the 8th, James Pugliese faced the minimum in the 9th for his league-leading 18th save.
The ‘Dogs have won three consecutive games and now 12 of their last 18. The Saltdogs are 6-1 against Houston this year, while each of the last six games have been decided by three or fewer runs.
The Apollos took a lead on Hudson Bilodeau’s two-out RBI single in the 3rd, but Forrestt Allday tied the game with a two-out single of his own in the bottom-half.
Lincoln starter Ben Wereski allowed just one run on five hits with two walks and seven strikeouts over 5.1 innings, while Jake Hohensee, Tyler Anderson, Carson Lance and James Pugliese combined for 3.1 scoreless innings in relief.
Josh Altmann went 1-for-3 with a walk and extended his on-base streak to 30 games and hitting streak to eight, while David Vidal went 1-for-4 and is now hitting .431 over his last 11 games. Justin Byrd went 1-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to five, and Curt Smith went 0-for-4 after he came in hitting .444 during a seven-game hitting streak coming in.
The ‘Dogs won while both Cleburne and Sioux City lost, so Lincoln is three games back of second place in the American Association South Division.
The second game in the three-game series is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. Wednesday, and pregame coverage will begin at 6:35 p.m. on ESPN Lincoln 101.5 FM/1480 AM.
The Saltdogs are celebrating their 20th season at Haymarket Park this season! All ticket and promotional information can be viewed at saltdogs.com.