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Crawdads blank Suns to pad lead

July 17, 2013

HICKORY, N.C. — A trio of Hickory pitchers combined on a two-hit shutout as the Crawdads blanked Hagerstown 6-0 on Wednesday night to extend their first-place lead to 1 1/2 games over the Suns in the South Atlantic League Northern Division second-half standings.

Starter C.J. Edwards (8-2) pitched 5 2/3 innings for the win, allowing one hit and three walks while striking out nine. Jose Monergo allowed only one hit in his 2 1/3 innings of relief, before Jose Valdespina closed out the Suns with a perfect ninth.

Suns starter Brett Mooneyham (4-3) allowed five runs, five hits and three walks while striking out five in five innings.

The Crawdads took a 1-0 lead in the first on an RBI single by Ryan Rua, and they went up 2-0 in the second on an RBI single by Jordan Akins. They extended their advantage to 5-0 in the third on Lewis Brinson’s 16th home run of the year — a three-run, two-out shot to left.

Hickory scored the game’s final run in the seventh against Hagerstown reliever Justin Thomas. Luis Marte led off with a double, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on Nick Williams’ groundout.

Wander Ramos and Stephen Perez each had a single for the Suns.

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