Bulls finish off series, Clippers season with 4-2 win
Columbus rallied, but could not generate enough offense to extend the series.
DURHAM, NC – Jeremy Moore grounded a double into right field to drive home Cole Figueroa in the bottom of the eighth inning for the winning run in a 4-2 victory over the Columbus Clippers on Saturday afternoon at Durham Bulls Athletic Park, taking the series three games to one.
Figueroa led off the eighth with a single to right that was just out of reach of Audy Ciriaco’s dive attempt. He followed his hit with a stolen base setting up Moore’s game winning hit.
Figueroa and the Bulls were aggressive on the base paths all game, stealing four bases off of Clippers pitching. Figueroa had two stolen bases and Nick Franklin’s stolen base in the fifth led to Durham’s first run.
Moore drove in two runs to lead the way for the Durham offense.
Vince Belnome gave the Bulls some insurance when he drove Moore home with a double off the wall in left.
Nate Karns started the game for Durham and held the Clippers in check for most of the afternoon. He struck out 12 batters over seven innings and held Columbus off the scoreboard until a seventh inning sacrifice fly by Audy Ciriaco.
At one point, Karns struck out six batters in a row from the last out of the first to the second out of the third.
But the Clippers were able to come off the mat in the late innings to tie the game off of reliever Merrill Kelly (1-0, 2.25). Matt Carson led off the eighth with a double into the left field corner and scored two batters later on a sacrifice fly by Luke Carlin to tie the game.
But it was short-lived and Durham rallied off J.C. Ramirez (0-1, 9.00) in the eighth to take the series.
Durham will play at the Pawtucket Red Sox, the wild card winner who swept the North Division Champion Syracuse Chiefs in three games, for the Governor’s Cup beginning on Tuesday night at 7:05 PM.
Michael Rich is a senior majoring in Communications at The Ohio State University.