Lookouts avoid sweep, end Smokies six-game win streak
CHATTANOOGA — Lookouts shortstop Ozzie Martinez hit a two-run home run in the fourth and Jeremy Hazelbaker hit a two-run triple in the fifth as Chattanooga defeated Corey Black and the Smokies 6-4 at AT&T Field Sunday evening. The loss snapped Tennessee’s season-high six-game win streak.
Black (2-2, 3.54) allowed five earned runs over five innings and took the loss. He walked five, struck out four and gave up four hits.
Garrett Gould earned the win for the Lookouts (12-17) after holding the Smokies (16-14) to a run on three hits over five innings. Gould (1-4, 6.41) walked three and struck out five while earning his first victory of the season.
Chattanooga, looking to avoid the sweep, struck first in the game with a run off Black in the first inning. That first inning run came after a wild pitch/strike out, and the Lookouts took an early 1-0 lead.
Later in the bottom of the fourth, Martinez blasted his two-run home run to make it a 3-0 Chattanooga. It was his first home run of the season.
The Smokies got on the board as Black added to his own cause with an RBI single scoring Jae-Hoon Ha in the top of the fifth. That cut the lead down to 3-1.
Hazelbaker answered the Smokies fifth inning run with a two-run triple in the bottom of the same inning. Hazelbaker scored from third moments later on an O’Koyea Dickson single to right to give the Lookouts a 6-1 lead.
In the top of the eighth the Smokies got back on the board as Rafael Lopez drove in two with a single and cut the deficit in half to make it 6-3
In the ninth the Smokies cut the deficit again when a fielder’s choice brought in Ha for the fourth Smokies run. However, it was not enough as John Andreoli struck out for the final out of the game and the victory went to the Lookouts with the final score of 6-4.
Black left after the fifth with the Smokies trailing 6-1. Relievers Austin Kirk and Tony Zych followed and kept the Lookouts without a run over the next three innings. They combined to allow just one hit and walked two batters.
Juan Noriega pitched the sixth and seventh for the Lookouts. He allowed a hit and a walk while keeping the Smokies without a run. Juan Gonzalez pitched the final two innings and allowed three runs (two earned). He got out of the ninth and sealed the victory with a strikeout of Andreoli.
The Smokies return home to Smokies Park tonight to start a five-game homestand with the Birmingham Barons. The Barons will send Nick McCully to the mound against Tennessee starter Ivan Pineyro, with the first pitch at Smokies Park scheduled for 7:15 p.m.
-From Contributed Reports