Steven Sensley doubled twice and collected three of Charleston’s five hits as the RiverDogs were stymied by righty Joe Cavallaro and the Columbia Fireflies for their fourth consecutive defeat on Friday, 2-1, in front of 4,539 at Joe Riley Park.
Charleston’s right fielder had a big night as the Louisiana native went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and the lone RiverDogs run. Sensley and third baseman Chris Hess combined for a two-out rally in the bottom of the fourth with a two-bagger and RBI knock, respectively.
With his two extra-base hits on Friday, Sensley now has a team-high 11 doubles on the campaign. Cavallaro (5-1) struck out nine Charleston batters, allowing one run across seven frames to lower his ERA to 2.21.
In his season debut, Charleston starter Jio Orozco (0-1) went four innings for the RiverDogs (17-23), giving up a pair of runs on five hits. The 20-year-old struck out five and rifled 77 pitches in the losing effort.
Both runs Orozco allowed came on a Wuilmer Becerra two-run single in the fourth. The right fielder was added to the Columbia (22-18) roster earlier in the day and collected two hits to complement two diving catches in the outfield in his season debut.
Greg Weissert hurled a season-high three innings in relief for the Dogs. The righty allowed a run on two hits, racking up four punch outs out of the pen.
Weissert was followed by right-hander Luis Cedeno, who threw a pair of scoreless frames. The sidewinder faced the minimum as he rolled an inning-ending double play in the ninth to wipe out the only baserunner he allowed to reach.
With the Charleston defeat, their evenly-matched season series with Columbia pulled even at 3-3. The two-run contest matched the largest margin between the two teams.
The RiverDogs brought their fans through a time warp to the arcade era in their mortal kombat against the Fireflies. Fans dig dug the 8-bit adventure, which featured tracks that paid homage to classic joystick games. These synthesized songs were played in conjunction with the Home Telecom Postgame Fireworks presented by WEZL and Live 5 News. The Dogs also celebrated the tech community in Charleston, putting the savvy bunch on the pole position of importance.
RiverDogs righty Alexander Vargas (1-0, 6.48) will battle Columbia southpaw and former first-rounder Anthony Kay (1-1, 4.70) in Saturday’s game three of the four-game set. First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 with the 15th annual Run Charlie Run 5K presented by Fleet Feet Sports beginning at 4 p.m. It is also Military Night presented by Bank of America in conjunction with NASH and Fox 24 and there will be a postgame Home Run Derby with active military competing. Saturday’s contest can be tuned into on WTMA 1250 AM and online streaming via riverdogs.com and the RiverDogs TuneIn radio station. Video streaming is available on MiLB.tv.