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Fontenot, Bulls earn walk-off win over Tides

Posted August 20

With the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the ninth inning, Mike Fontenot’s single to centerfield lifted the Durham Bulls to a 3-2, walk-off victory over the Norfolk Tides Wednesday night at the DBAP.

After Cole Figueroa led off the ninth frame with a triple, Mikie Mahtook and Tim Beckham were each intentionally walked. That set the stage for the reigning IL Player of the Week to deliver the game-winning hit, giving the Bulls (68-63) an 8.0-game lead in the IL South with 13 games remaining.

For the second straight night, Durham plated the contest’s first run when Jeremy Moore hit an opposite-field, solo homer over the Blue Monster in the bottom of the second inning. Then in the fourth the Bulls doubled their lead as Mahtook tripled and later scored on a Beckham double.

Norfolk (60-71) fought back however, scoring in the fifth inning on an RBI double from Christian Walker. Then in the sixth the visitors loaded the bases with nobody out on an error, a hit-batter and a single. After a pair of strikeouts, C.J. Riefenhauser dealt a wild pitch, allowing Julio Borbon to score from third base and tie the game at 2-2.

Adam Liberatore (6-1) picked up the victory, tossing 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief to extend his scoreless inning streak to 17 1/3 frames. Southpaw Joe Saunders (0-1) took the loss, allowing the winning run to score in the ninth.

The three-game set concludes Thursday, as RHP Nathan Karns (9-6, 4.45) starts for Durham opposite RHP Mike Wright (4-11, 4.16) for the Tides. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

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