Chattanooga (MississippiBraves.com) – For the second straight night, the Mississippi Braves threatened a big comeback in the ninth, but they stranded the tying run on base in the final frame for a 4-3 loss to the Chattanooga Lookouts on Monday night at AT&T Field.
With the Braves (10-8, 43-43) trailing 4-1 entering the ninth, Lookouts (4-13, 47-38) reliever Alex Muren (S, 1) walked David Rohm and Eric Garcia to start the frame. Steve Rodriguez bounced out to short to advance the runners, and Matt Lipka made it 4-2 with a sacrifice fly to centerfield.
Emerson Landoni stepped in and ripped his fifth hit, an RBI single to pull it to 4-3. It was Landoni’s second straight 5-for-5 game, joining Sunday afternoon’s 11-10 come-from-behind win over Chattanooga.
Muren struck out KD Kang to seal the win for left-hander David Hurlbut (5-4), who allowed just five hits over seven shutout innings, walking two. Stephen Janas (0-2) took the loss with a run on five hits over six innings.
Chattanooga started the scoring in the second, loading the bases on three straight knocks from Kennys Vargas, Adam Walker and Steve Wickens. Marcus Knecht grounded into a double play, scoring Vargas from third for a 1-0 lead.
The game stayed tight until the seventh. Mississippi made three errors on the same play to bring in the first of two unearned runs off of MLB rehabbing reliever Andrew McKirahan. With two out and Wickens standing at first, Stuart Turner grounded a ball to third that Ruiz couldn’t handle. KD Kang came up without the ball for a fielding error, then threw wildly to the plate to allow Turner to move to third.
Turner came in to score a batter later when Heiker Meneses singled, a second unearned run to make it 3-0.
Mississippi got a run back in the eighth to pull it to 3-1. Lipka and Landoni singled to lead off the inning against reliever Scott Atchison, and a Kang RBI single drove in Lipka from third after a double steal.
Chattanooga tacked on an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth for a 4-1 lead. Niko Goodrum tripled against Jason Hursh and crossed the plate on a Travis Harrison knock a batter later.
The Braves narrowly missed the comeback and the five-game sweep, but they took four of five from Chattanooga leading into Tuesday’s off day. The Braves return home Wednesday to open a five-game series with the Jacksonville Suns, with first pitch in the opener slated for 7:00 PM CT at Trustmark Park.
Right-hander Jorge Reyes (6-4, 2.44) takes the hill for Mississippi against Suns right-hander Trevor Williams (5-7, 3.98).
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