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ZEBULON — In a 4-3 loss to the Down East Wood Ducks on Wednesday, the Carolina Mudcats dropped their eighth straight game and 14th in their last 17 contests.
With a morning start at Five County Stadium, Carolina (16-24, 55-64) was in search of its first victory since July 22 but the offensive woes continued.
After scoring a run each in the first inning, the Wood Ducks (25-14, 75-34) retook the 2-1 lead in the sixth inning on a solo home run hit by Curtis Terry. The previous day, Terry hit another home run to break up the 1-1 tie in another 4-3 decision won by Down East.
That run ended up making the difference after a run was traded by both teams in the eighth and ninth innings to end the game.
Down 4-2 with one chance at bat left, the Mudcats maneuvered a runner home after a wild pitch moved Eddie Silva into scoring position. When Trevor Morrison hit a sacrifice fly to right field, Silva scored, leaving the tying run, Rob Henry, in scoring position at second base. With a chance to make things interesting, a groundout to second base ended the game. During the winless streak that will extend into August, the Mudcats haven’t scored more than three runs in any contest – while being shutout three times.
On the offensive end, Zach Clark was the lone Mudcats hitter to have a multi-hit game. Catcher Mario Feliciano’s league-leading 16th home run in the eighth inning was the other offensive bright spot in the contest.
As a team, the slumps continued. Wood Ducks starter Reid Anderson (6-5) held the Mudcats to just one run on four hits in five innings of work on his way to capturing the victory. Anderson struck out six batters before exiting, where a committee of Jairo Beras, Josh Advocate and Michael Matuella maintained the lead in the final four innings to prevent Carolina from ending its skid.
Despite pitching through a season-high seven innings, Mudcats starter Nelson Hernandez (10-8) was the losing pitcher, giving up five hits and two runs from the mound. Reliever Michael Petersen and Cody Beckman split the final two innings evenly, giving up two final runs to end the game.
With the win, the Wood Ducks have captured 11 straight victories over the Mudcats in 2019.