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Varsho extends hitting streak to nine, Aces fall to Aviators 8-3

Varsho extends hitting streak to nine, Aces fall to Aviators 8-3 (David Calvert)

After taking the series opener, the Reno Aces dropped game two to the Las Vegas Aviators, 8-3, on Friday night.

Blake Lalli’s squad remains on an even pace with the 2011 team for the franchise record after moving to 20-12 through the first 32 games.

Daulton Varsho extended his hitting streak to nine in the opening frame, taking Matt Milburn deep to straight-away center field to give the Aces a 1-0 lead. With his home run, the Aces’ catcher has registered a dinger in back-to-back games for the first time since April 29-30 with Visalia.

In the bottom half, Varsho caught Luis Barrera stealing second base, marking the second time in as many games the 24-year-old has thrown a runner out from behind the plate.

The Aviators tied the game at one in the home portion of the second on a single from Vimael Machin to bring Frank Schwindel in from third.

In the top of the third, Reno loaded the bases following a leadoff double from Bryan Holaday, a single off of Matt Lipka’s bat and a walk to Josh VanMeter. The Aces reclaimed the lead, 2-1, when Holaday came into score on a double play in the ensuing at-bat.

The Biggest Little City’s team threatened in the fourth, battling the Aviators’ pitchers and loading the bases. Drew Ellis reached base on an error to start the frame before being moved to second on Jamie Ritchie’s single in the next at-bat. After Juniel Querecuto moved both runners up one base on a groundout to first, Holaday walked to put runners at every base. Las Vegas’ Tanner Anderson denied the Aces’ chance to extend their lead and kept the score at 2-1.

The team from Summerlin took a 5-2 lead in the bottom half of the fourth on an RBI base knock by Nate Mondou and a three-run home run off of Cody Thomas’ bat.

After a scoreless fifth and sixth innings, the Aces slashed its deficit to two, 5-3, in the seventh on a bases-loaded groundout that brought Holaday around to score. Juniel Querecuto reached base safely for the 12th-straight game after he singled up the middle.

The Aviators’ Frank Schwindel put the home team up by five, 8-3, in the bottom half of the seventh on a three-run shot.

Josh VanMeter singled in the ninth to finish the night with two hits and a three-game hitting streak, but the Aviators closed out the game to take game two.

Reno returns to action on Saturday against Las Vegas, with the first pitch slated for 7:05 p.m. PT. Humberto Mejia is slated to make his second start for the Aces. Saturday’s contest can be heard on or locally on KPLY 630 AM with Zack Bayrouty on the call.

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