Four-Run Sixth Lifts Curve Past Erie

CURVE, Pa. – The Altoona Curve racked up four runs on three extra-base hits in the sixth inning to roll past the Erie SeaWolves in a 5-3 win on Tuesday night at Peoples Natural Gas Field.

(Photo courtesy of Altoona Curve)

Trailing 2-1 entering the bottom of the sixth, the Curve (12-12) figured out SeaWolves (10-11) starter Matt Manning (Loss, 2-1). Jared Oliva worked a lead-off walk and scored from first on Bralin Jackson’s game-tying, RBI triple into the right-field corner. Two batters later, Logan Hill ripped a two-strike pitch into right for an RBI double to give the Curve the lead. The next batter, Hunter Owen, triggered fireworks with his seventh homer of the season, a towering two-run shot to left to pad the Curve lead at 5-2.

Manning struck out the side in the first, retired the first eight batters he faced and cruised through five frames until he ran into trouble in the sixth. Manning allowed five runs on four hits in six innings with nine strikeouts and three walks.

Curve starter Scooter Hightower (Win, 1-2) bested Manning, allowing two runs (one earned) in a season-high six innings with two strikeouts while scattering six hits and stranding five baserunners.

Erie opened the scoring in the third on Derek Hill’s RBI single to the right-field wall before the Curve answered on Oliva’s RBI triple to dead center in the bottom of the inning, scoring Adrian Valerio, who worked a two-out walk ahead of Oliva.

The game remained tied, 1-1, until Josh Lester pushed the SeaWolves ahead with an RBI double into the right-field corner in the top of the sixth. Altoona came right back with its four-run bottom of the frame to regain the lead for good.

Tate Scioneaux relieved Hightower in the seventh and recorded two outs before allowing a run on an Isaac Paredes’ single to left to make it 5-3. Curve manager Michael Ryan called on Blake Weiman after the single and the southpaw struck out Kody Eaves, who represented the tying run, to end the inning.

Weiman then tossed a perfect eighth inning with two called third strikes, as he mowed down all four batters he faced on the night to preserve the two-run lead.

Matt Eckelman (Save, 4) was summoned for the ninth and allowed a lead-off single but rolled a double-play grounder and finished off the victory with a strikeout.

The finale of the three-game series is set for Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. Right-hander James Marvel (3-1, 1.52) will toe the rubber for the Curve against SeaWolves right-hander Alex Faedo (1-1, 3.52).

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