MANCHESTER, N.H. – John Aiello’s sixth home run of the year proved to be the difference on Thursday night as the New Hampshire Fisher Cats walked off with a 7-6 victory over the Richmond Flying Squirrels.
Aiello sent a 1-0 pitch toward Elm Street in the ninth to break the deadlock, following Fisher Cat home runs earlier in the game from Zach Britton and Ryan Gold.
The Fisher Cats had 12 hits on the night, with Britton contributing three, Aiello, Cam Eden and Addison Barger providing two each.
Adam Kloffenstein’s start for the ‘Cats ended in the fifth, where he was on the hook for five of Richmond’s six runs.
Sean Mellen eventually retired the side, but not before Ricardo Genoves added a solo home run, which proved to be Richmond’s final run of the evening.
Mellen and the rest of the Fisher Cat bullpen would allow just two more batters to reach base after Genoves’ blast, with Jimmy Burnette (3-3), getting the win after retiring the Squirrels in the top of the ninth.
Combined, the four Fisher Cat pitchers struck out 19 batters, with Burnette and Braden Scott striking out all but two of the batters they faced collectively over the last three innings of the contest.
The two teams play again on Friday at 7:05 p.m.