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Big Fifth Inning Dooms RiverDogs in 10-6 Loss to Columbia

The Charleston RiverDogs surrendered six runs in the top of the fifth inning, allowing the...
The Charleston RiverDogs surrendered six runs in the top of the fifth inning, allowing the Columbia Fireflies to pull away for a 10-5 victory in front of 2,491 fans at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park on Sunday evening.(Charleston RiverDogs)
Published: Aug. 1, 2021 at 9:58 PM EDT
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Charleston, SC - The Charleston RiverDogs surrendered six runs in the top of the fifth inning, allowing the Columbia Fireflies to pull away for a 10-5 victory in front of 2,491 fans at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park on Sunday evening.

The RiverDogs dropped the final two games of the series, losing consecutive games for the first time since June 1 and 2. The teams traded runs in the second inning with Columbia (38-39) briefly grabbing a 1-0 lead on a sacrifice fly from Gage Hughes.  In the bottom of the frame, Jonathan Embry tied the score with an RBI single to drive in Heriberto Hernandez from second.  The fifth inning began with the same score, but the Fireflies opened the inning with five straight batters reaching against Jose Lopez.  The five-batter span included four singles and a walk with Saul Garza and Kale Emshoff driving in runs. 

The RiverDogs called on Trey Cumbie mid-inning and the southpaw allowed a two-run single to Burle Dixon that made it 6-1.  One more run scored when Dixon stole third and the throw from catcher Matt Dyer sailed into left field.  Trailing by six, the RiverDogs (54-23) cut the deficit in half quickly with a three-run home run from Abiezel Ramirez in the home half of the fifth.  The long ball was Ramirez’s ninth of the season.  A sacrifice fly from Alexander Ovalles trimmed the deficit to 7-5 in the seventh inning.  

Entering the ninth inning, the RiverDogs were within reaching distance.  However, Emshoff and Felix Familia hit back-to-back home runs off Hector Figueroa to push the margin to 10-5.  In a last gasp effort, the RiverDogs received a two-out RBI single from Alika Williams and had the tying run in the on-deck circle when Osleivis Basabe struck out to end the game.  

Lopez allowed one run over 3.0 innings of work with three hits allowed and three walks.  Lugo took the loss after giving up five runs in 1.0 inning on the bump.  Joe LaSorsa had the best night on the mound among the five pitchers who appeared for the RiverDogs, working 2.0 scoreless innings. Emshoff and Familia each finished with three hits, including a home run, to lead Columbia’s 12-hit attack.  Ramirez and Matt Dyer each collected three hits for Charleston.

Ballpark Fun

During the seventh-inning stretch, a fan was awarded a prize pack from Louisiana Hot Sauce.  The young man proceeded to take one of the bottles out of the pack and chug the entire contents, much to the delight of those in attendance who were cheering him on. The RiverDogs will take Monday off before returning to The Joe to host the Augusta GreenJackets on Tuesday night at 7:05 p.m. 

Fans are invited to bring their dogs with them every Tuesday as part of Dog Day presented by Island Coastal Lager with $2 hot dogs and beer.  It is also National Night Out with the Charleston Police Department at The Joe.  There will be several emergency vehicles at the stadium, a police dunk tank and a visit from McGruff the Crime Dog.