Neither team was able to crack the run column for the first four innings of the game but the Curve managed a run in the fifth thanks to a two-out rally. After Kawika Emsley-Pai drew a five-pitch walk, he advanced to third when Gift Ngoepe roped a double to right. With two runners in scoring position, Emsley-Pai scored from third thanks to a single to right by Alen Hanson.
The lead didn’t last long for Altoona. In the RubberDucks’ next turn at bat, they scored a pair of unearned runs to take a 2-1 lead. In the seventh, Akron tallied another run to take a 3-1 advantage.
In the seventh, the Curve struck to within one. Willy Garcia led off the inning with a double then advanced to third on a groundout. After ball four to Emsley-Pai scooted past the Akron catcher, it allowed Garcia to score to make it 3-2.
Akron padded three insurance runs in the ninth. After back-to-back singles, Tyler Naquin hit a one-out three run blast over the left field wall to make it 6-2.
Curve starter Nick Kingham (1-5) took another tough-luck loss after he surrendered three runs (one earned) on seven hits over a season-high seven innings. The pitching prospect struck out two batters and walked a pair. Akron starting pitcher Joe Colon (3-2) tossed five innings of one-run ball and picked up his third win of the year while Tyler Sturdevant collected his fifth save of the season.
The Curve (17-27) will play their final home game against the RubberDucks (30-15) on Thursday morning with a 10:30 a.m. first pitch. Thursday’s game is the final Education Day of the season and also a Thirsty Thursday presented by Rocky 104.9. Any fans of age who come to the ballpark can purchase $2 16 oz. drafts of Miller Lite plus all fans can get half-priced regular sodas.
RHP A.J. Morris (4-0, 1.46) will take the bump for Altoona as he aims for his fifth win of the season and will look to keep his ERA atop the Eastern League. The Humble, Texas native will be opposed by RHP Will Roberts (4-4, 4.17).
--Altoona Curve Media Relations
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