Playoff Recap: Sept. 8


Durham 5, Toledo 2
(Durham wins series 3-0)

The Bulls continued their home run frenzy, hitting three more bombs’"they connected for nine in the series’"to sweep Toledo with a 5-2 victory.

Third baseman Evan Longoria blasted two homers, and wound up going 3-for-4 with three RBIs while left fielder Jon Weber also went deep for Durham.

The Bulls advance to the Governor’™s Cup Finals for the first time since 2003, and will face the winner of the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and Richmond series.

Richmond 6, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 4
(Richmond leads series 2-1)

Richmond scored four times in the top of the eighth inning to take a 2-1 lead over the Yankees with a 6-4 win.

Outfielder Gregor Blanco went 3-for-3 with two walks and a run scored in the R-Braves’™ 14-hit attack.


Nashville 6, New Orleans 5, 10 innings
(New Orleans leads series 2-1)

The Sounds fought off elimination with a two-out bases-loaded RBI single in the bottom of the 10th by catcher J.P. Hopf that gave Nashville a dramatic 6-5 win to stay alive in the series.

Hopf, who also homered in the game, went 3-for-4 with three RBIs. First baseman Andy Abad also went deep for the Sounds, while third baseman Brad Nelson went 4-for-4 with three runs scored.

Sacramento 7, Salt Lake 4
(Salt Lake leads series 2-1)

Facing elimination, Sacramento got a huge outing from righthander Brad Knox.

Knox, who threw 115 pitches in the game, went 7 1/3 innings and allowed four runs on seven hits, striking out four.

Shortstop Gregorio Petit went 3-for-4 with a pair of runs scored, while veteran infielder Lou Merloni collected a pair of hits and scored twice for the River Cats.


Trenton 3, Portland 2
(Trenton leads series 2-1)

Pitching and defense remain the keys in this series, and Thunder righthander Daniel McCutchen delivered on Friday night as Trenton took a 2-1 series lead with a 3-2 win against Portland.

McCutchen allowed a run on three hits and whiffed five over six innings of work.

Akron 6, Erie 3
(Akron leads series 2-1)

The Aeros raced out to a 6-0 lead, courtesy of homers by first baseman Jordan Brown and right fielder Stephen Head, and Akron was able to hang on late for a 6-3 win despite a shaky outing from the bullpen.

Lefthander Jeremy Sowers, who was reassigned from Triple-A Buffalo to remain active for a big league callup later this month, allowed a run on four hits and struck out seven over 7 1/3 innings.


Huntsville 5, Tennessee 0
(Series tied 1-1)

Huntsville righthander Corey Thurman combined with relievers Dave Johnson and Luis Pena for just the third postseason no-hitter in Southern League history, blanking the Smokies, 5-0.

Thurman, 28, struck out seven and walked two over six innings. It was the first postseason no-hitter in the SL since Jacksonville righthanders Chad Billingsley and Jonathan Broxton shut down Birmingham in 2005.

Mississippi 8, Montgomery 3
(Series tied 1-1)

The M-Braves rallied for five runs in the eighth inning to defeat Montgomery, 8-3, and knot the series at 1-1.

Mississippi designated hitter Josh Burrus went 3-for-4 with three RBIs and righthander Charlie Morton was exceptional in a starting role for the Braves. Morton allowed a run on three hits and fanned eight over seven innings of work.


Springfield 16, Tulsa 8
(Springfield wins series 3-0)

Cardinals first baseman Mark Hamilton led a 21-hit attack, homering three times as Springfield completed a sweep over Tulsa.

Hamilton, catcher Bryan Anderson, shortstop Jose Martinez and left fielder Cody Haerther each collected four hits and the 23-year-old first baseman drove in seven runs in the victory.

San Antonio 5, Frisco 0
(San Antonio wins series 3-0)

San Antonio lefthander Wade LeBlanc allowed just two hits, struck out 10 and did not issue a walk over six strong innings as the Missions swept Frisco with a 5-0 shutout.

LeBlanc, who was dominant down the stretch for the Missions, hasn’™t walked a batter over his last five starts.


Lake Elsinore 8, Inland Empire 2
(Lake Elsinore wins series 2-1)

After dropping the first game of the series, Lake Elsinore battled back to win the next two games and eliminate Inland Empire with an 8-2 victory.

Lefthander Steve Garrison, who came over to the Padres from Milwaukee in the Scott Linebrink deal, allowed five hits over seven shutout innings, striking out eight.

Lake Elsinore will travel to Lancaster for the next round of the postseason beginning Saturday.


Salem 5, Kinston 3
(Salem wins series 2-1)

Despite winning both halves in the CL’™s Southern Division and having one of the best records in the minors (87-52), Kinston was eliminated from the postseason by Salem on Friday night as the Avalanche defeated the Indians, 5-3.

Salem scored two runs in the top of the eighth to break a 3-3 tie, and the K-Tribe couldn’™t answer in their final two chances.

Lefthanded reliever Chris Blazek, 23, pitched the final 2 1/3 innings for the Avs, striking out five.


Clearwater 4, Sarasota 3
(Clearwater wins series 2-1)

Clearwater center fielder Brian Burgamy hit and RBI single and scored the go-ahead run in the top of the seventh inning to give the Threshers a 4-3 win against Sarasota and earn the club a berth in the FSL championship series.

Burgamy went 2-for-5 with a double, and designated hitter Jake Blalock drove in a pair of runs for Clearwater.

The Threshers will face Brevard County in the finals, beginning Saturday night.


South Bend 7, Dayton 5
(South Bend wins series 2-1)

South Bend first baseman Brad Miller hit a first-inning home run and drove in four runs as South Bend sent Dayton packing with a 7-5 win.

Right fielder Daniel Perales went 3-for-5 with two runs scored and reliever Jason Urquidez shut things down over the final two innings, allowing just one hit and striking out three.

The Silver Hawks will face West Michigan in Round 2 of the playoffs, beginning Sunday.

Clinton 5, Cedar Rapids 4
(Clinton wins series 2-1)

Clinton right fielder K.C. Herren delivered an RBI single in the bottom of the sixth inning, scoring shortstop Marcus Lemon to give the LumberKings a 5-4 win and a berth in the second round of the playoffs.

Herren went 2-for-5 with two RBIs, while Lemon went 2-for-4 with a triple and two runs scored.


Columbus 7, Augusta 1
(Columbus wins series 2-0)

Catfish righthander Jeremy Hellickson tossed six strong innings and Columbus rallied for seven runs in the top of the fifth inning to complete the sweep of Augusta with a 7-1 win.

Hellickson allowed a run on four hits and struck out five, while leadoff hitter Maiko Loyola went 3-for-5 with a home run and two RBIs to lead Columbus.

Hickory 13, West Virginia 7
(Series tied 1-1)

Hickory right fielder Jonel Pacheco homered twice and drove in seven runs as Hickory knotted the series 1-1 with a 13-7 win against the Power.

Pacheco went 3-for-5, while 27-year-old designated hitter Bobby Kingsbury went 2-for-5 with a home run, three runs scored and four RBIs.