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Freedom Drop Second Straight in Evansville

The Florence Freedom (5-3) fell to the Evansville Otters (6-2) by a final score of 4-3 Saturday night in a game that saw Florence rally late but Evansville held on for the win.

The Freedom took the early lead in the first inning as Austin Newell got things started with a single. Jake Luce followed with a single of his own. Then the Freedom pulled off a double steal and catcher J.D. Dorgan’s throw went into left field. Newell scored and the Freedom grabbed a 1-0 lead.

The Freedom stole seven bases in the game but left 11 men on base.

The 1-0 lead was short lived as Evansville plated three in the third inning off Freedom starter David Duncan. A Dorgan sacrifice fly tied the game and Cory Urquhart singled home two more runs with two outs to make it 3-1 in favor of the Otters.

Duncan went four innings, giving up the three runs on seven hits. He walked one and struck out three.

The Freedom had a number of chances to score but they finally broke through in the eighth inning. Sam Eberle doubled to start the frame. Two outs later, pinch hitter Ryan Solberg singled home Eberle to make the score 3-2. Then pinch hitter Gaby Juarbe singled Solberg to second. Travis Weaver singled Solberg home to tie the game. Florence pulled off another double steal but both Solberg and Weaver were left stranded.

Evansville responded in the bottom of the eighth against reliever Daniel DeSimone (0-1). With two outs and nobody on, Kurt Wertz Jr. singled to right-center. Jake Luce misplayed the ball, allowing Wertz to advance to third. Then Josh Allen doubled him home to put the Otters up 4-3.

Florence loaded the bases in the top of the ninth with one out. But Steve Carrillo hit into a game ending 6-4-3 double play as the Freedom fell one run short.

The Freedom will try to salvage the final game of the series Sunday night as they send ace Coleman Stephens (2-0, 0.60 ERA) to the mound. First pitch is set for 6:05 p.m. eastern time. Fans can tune in at http://mixlr.com/florencefreedom/.

Photo via Florence Freedom