CLEBURNE, Texas – Randy Norris became only the second player in franchise history with two triples, but the ‘Dogs allowed five unanswered runs in a 7-6 loss to the Cleburne Railroaders at The Depot on Thursday night.
Norris hit triples in each of the first two innings, but after taking a 6-2 lead in the 2nd inning, the Railroaders rallied with three in the 3rd and two in the 5th to win a fifth straight game.
Norris had Lincoln’s second two-triple game, and first since Evan Tartaglia hit two against St. Paul on July 24, 2006.
Cleburne (20-33) opened the scoring on a pair of solo homers from Chuck Taylor and Chase Simpson in the 1st inning.
Lincoln (26-26) scored six times in the 2nd. Matt Goodheart drove in Welington Dotel after Dotel’s leadoff double extended his hitting streak to a season-high 10 games. Later in the inning, with the bases loaded, Drew DeVine reached on an error by the shortstop to tie the game at two. Norris then cleared the bases with another triple after he led off the game with one, and Patrick Caulfield then singled in Norris to give the ‘Dogs a 6-2 lead.
Kacy Clemens hit a three-run homer in the 3rd inning to make it 6-5, and Simpson’s second homer of the game – a two-run homer off the foul pole in right field – gave Cleburne the lead for good.
Zach Keenan allowed five runs in 3 and 2/3 innings – his shortest start as a professional. Tucker Smith took the loss after allowing two runs in the 2 and 1/3 relief innings. Jesse Stallings pitched a scoreless 7th and Jonathan Cheshire tossed a scoreless 8th.
The ‘Dogs are now 8-18 all-time in Cleburne – a series largely dominated by the home team since Cleburne joined the league in 2017. Lincoln is 19-9 against the Railroaders at Haymarket Park.
The series continues Friday night. First pitch is scheduled for 7:06 p.m., and pregame coverage begins at 6:35 p.m. on ESPN Lincoln 101.5 FM/1480 AM.
The Saltdogs are playing their 21st season in Lincoln! Visit saltdogs.com and follow us @saltdogsball on all social media for information regarding tickets and promotions all season long.