(Blake Von Hagen, Tennessee Smokies) The Tennessee Smokies defeated the Montgomery Biscuits 6-4 in game one of the series on Wednesday night at Smokies Stadium. An early offensive outburst combined with good pitching down the stretch led the Smokies to a game one victory.
Tennessee jumped out to an early lead when Trent Giambrone tripled to center in the second inning and Ian Rice scored to make it 1-0. Giambrone scored on a wild pitch to increase the lead to 2-0. Later in the frame, Trey Martin doubled in Daniel Spingola to give the Smokies a 3-0 lead. Montgomery answered in the top of the third inning with a solo home run and an RBI-single to cut the Smokies lead to 3-2.
Giambrone quickly responded with a two-run home run to left field in the bottom of the inning, once again scoring Rice and making it a 5-2 game. Giambrone finished 2-for-3 at the plate with two runs scored and three RBIs. Charcer Burks added to the lead with an RBI-single in the fourth inning that scored Spingola and made it 6-2.
The Biscuits got two runs back in the fifth inning on an RBI-single, cutting the deficit to 6-4, but the Smokies held on to win the game.
Oscar De La Cruz made the pitching start for the Smokies. De La Cruz threw 4.2 innings, allowing four runs on nine hits and one walk. He also struck out three before handing the ball to Scott Effross in the fifth. Effross pitched 1.1 innings, giving up just two hits in a scoreless effort. He also added a strikeout. James Norwood threw 2.0 scoreless innings of relief after Effross exited the game. Craig Brooks pitched a shutout ninth inning to earn the save.
Tennessee and Montgomery will meet for the second game of the series on Thursday at 7:00 p.m. Michael Rucker (5-4, 4.37 ERA) is going to start on the mound for the Smokies and the Biscuits will counter with Genesis Cabrera (5-4, 3.91 ERA). Rucker has a 1-1 record with a 2.25 ERA in the month of June.