'Betsy noses past K-Mets in 10 innings

By Wes Holtsclaw
STAR CORRESPONDENT
wholtsclaw@starhq.com

   It was an all out "slugfest" at Riverside Stadium.
   Backed behind stunning home runs early in the contest, the Kingsport Mets and the Elizabethton Twins battled it out through ten innings.
   But a throwing error in the 10th inning set up a game-winning single from Daniel Marin to give Elizabethton the big 5-4 victory.
   "It's been awhile since we've had to win in extra innings," said Twins manager Ray Smith. "I'm glad to see Marin get a good 3-0 count and drill it to the gap.
   "Some athletes want to leave the game winner to the next guy. It's the good players that cherish the moment, good to see the aggressive swing."
   In what was a crucial moment of the tied contest, Dusty Goman was obviously hit hard close to the wrist in a play that Buzz Laird called a foul ball.
   The play could've played things up differently for Elizabethton, but Smith was glad to end it the way it did.
   "It might have changed things," he said. "Dusty ended up with a good swing on it. Who knows? I would of liked the opportunity."
   Goman sat down after the inning, and will be checked on tomorrow morning.
   "He'll get some pictures tomorrow morning," Smith said. "You gotta hope for the best, but you've gotta prepare for the worse. We hope he's still there to fill the four hole for us."
   The game was a scoreless matter in the second inning, when Justin Sims was hit with his first pitch on the night, setting up an Inocencio Hiraldo shot to give the 'Betsy Bombers' a 2-0 lead.
   Kingsport rallied back in the third with a solo shot from Derran Watts to tie the game.
   Elizabethton got a good single from Doug Deeds to start its frame in the third, and with a huge double in the center-field gap from Goman, the Twins were back up with a 2-1 lead.
   Tyler Beuerlein's walk proved huge for the Mets, when Yllyush Soto smacked an RBI triple into right field.
   Brandon Wilson rounded to the plate, but was cut off by a good throw from Felix Molina to Daniel Marin to hold the game at 3-2 for the Twins.
   Inocencio Hiraldo stepped up and took it past the Covered Bridge in the fourth inning to give Elizabethton an extra stretch with a 4-2 lead, but it didn't last.
   Justin Wendt climbed on with an errored play, leading to a huge Jesus Linares two-run shot over the Fleetwood sign in center field, tying the contest at 4-all.
   The game went down to the wire late, with several close innings from both clubs. But one team's rally seemed to fuel the other to the point of climax up to the 10th inning.
   Kingsport came out with a fire to win. Jesus Linares singled and made his way around the bases, but two straight plays from Sam Taylor to Felix Molina shut the Mets down.
   Elizabethton bounced back with a huge Molina pop fly which almost cleared the fence. Doug Deeds walked, followed by an Edgardo LeBron single and a throwing error by Justin Wendt that moved Deeds around.
   Daniel Marin took three straight balls, then sent it flying into the center-gap, giving Elizabethton the 5-4 victory.
   The Venezuelan was happy to get the game-winning chance.
   "I went for the fast one and tried to find a strike," said Marin. "That fast ball came right in the middle. I feel good, it is a good time for the team. It was a good hit."
   Inocencio Hiraldo led the team with a 2-of-4 performance with two homers and three ribbies. The third baseman from the Dominican Republic found his stroke on Tuesday.
   "It was fantastic. I feel very well," said Hiraldo. "It was a good game for me. The game was close and I hit the home runs. It was very well."
   On a sad note for the Twins, catcher Danny Matienzo will be out for the remainder of the season due to a small tear in his index finger after smacking a home run Monday night.
   "He will be in rehab for six weeks," said Smith. "If he played any more it would have to be surgically repaired. So he is on the shelf for the duration."
   "We'd love to have him, but it was a good way to go down -- on a positive note."
   Elizabethton cashed in on Carter County Bank night with an impressive crowd of 1,253 people. Burlington travels into town tonight for Joe Mauer Magnetic Card night.