For the second consecutive year, the Atlantic League Championship Series will come down to the final night of the playoffs. The Ducks beat the Sugar Land Skeeters, 3-2, in 10 innings at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas Saturday night, evening the series at 2 games apiece and forcing a winner-take-all Game 5 Sunday.
Deibinson Romero’s sacrifice fly in the 10th inning drove in L.J Mazzilli and broke a 2-2 tie.
Ducks starter Brandon Beachy allowed two runs and six hits. He struck out seven and walked one. Joe Iorio pitched three scoreless innings in relief and Cody Mincey pitched a hitless 10th to earn the save.
Sugar Land jumped on Beachy for two runs in the first inning of Game 4. Denis Phipps two-RBI triple drove in Rico Noel and Wynton Bernard. The Ducks cut the lead in half in the second inning when D’Arby Myers' RBI single drove in Deibinson Romero. They tied it in the sixth when David Washington’s RBI brought in L.J. Mazzilli.
The win stopped the Ducks two-game losing streak in the series and kept alive their hope of winning their first league championship since 2013. Despite scoring five runs in the final three innings, the Ducks fell in Game 3, 7-5,Friday night. This came after the bats went cold in Game 2 and they lost 7-0.
Former major leaguer Vin Mazzaro will start for the Ducks in Game 5. Mazzaro allowed three runs and three hits while striking out five in six innings of the Ducks 7-5 Game 1 victory Tuesday night.
Sugar Land has beaten the Ducks in two of the last three championship series and beat them 4-1 in last year’s winner-take-all Game 5 in Central Islip. The Ducks are hoping that a change in venue leads to a different result . . . and a trophy to take back home.