ROME, Ga. — The West Virginia Power rallied from a five-run deficit to beat the Rome Braves 9-8 Saturday night at State Mutual Stadium.
West Virginia trailed 8-3 after five innings and scored six unanswered against Rome’s bullpen to take the series opener.
The Braves jumped to a 3-0 lead in the first off Power starter Cody Dickson. Rome sent eight batters to the plate in the inning and reached on four singles, a walk and an error. Sean Godfrey, Victor Caratini and Tanner Kreitemeyer each singled to drive in a run.
The Power cut the deficit down to one with a run in the third inning on a single by Erich Weiss that brought home Maximo Rivera and a bunt single by Jeff Roy that drove in Francisco Diaz. The Braves added two runs in the bottom of the fourth, West Virginia scored once in the fifth and Rome scored three more in the fifth for an 8-3 advantage.
West Virginia’s rally continued with a two-run seventh. Jeff Roy walked and moved to third on a single by Michael Fransoso. Roy scored as Maximo Rivera reached on an error and Edwin Espinal drove in Fransoso with a sacrifice fly to cut the Braves’ lead down to 8-5.
The Power’s Kawika Emsley-Pai, Diaz, and Adam Landecker each singled to start the seventh. The sixth Power run was tallied on a ground out and Rivera singled in Diaz and Landecker to tie the game at 8.
In the eighth inning, Weiss walked, stole second and moved to third on a throwing error, and a Michael Swanner wild pitch allowed Weiss to score the go-ahead run.
Dickson did not factor in the decision after allowing five runs (four earned) on five hits in four innings. Power reliever Isaac Sanchez (3-3) earned the win with one scoreless inning of relief and closer Brett McKinney worked the final two frames for his fourth save. Swanner (3-1) was charged with a blown save and the loss after allowing West Virginia to tie the game in the seventh and take the lead in the eighth.
West Virginia and Rome play the second of this four-game series today. First pitch is slated for 2 p.m.