Juremi Profar kick started the 2nd inning with a leadoff walk against rehabbing Colorado Rockies right-hander Tyler Chatwood, before Carlos Arroyo laid down a sacrifice bunt and Jose Cardona put the Crawdads on the board with an RBI double to right. Cardona advanced to third base on a throwing error by Tourists right fielder Yonathan Daza, and came home one batter later on an RBI sacrifice fly to center from Dylan Moore to make the score 2-0.
Asheville responded in the bottom of the frame with a leadoff single by Shane Hoelscher off of Mendez and a 2-out, RBI double from Josh Fuentes to cut the score to 2-1.
It would remain the same over the next five frames, as Mendez gave way to Filomeno and Tate to get the game to the 9th. The 'Dads finally broke the contest open in the top of the frame, with three runs on three hits to extend their advantage to 5-1. Moore and Luke Tendler both reach on singles and advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch from Tourists hurler Jesus Tinoco. Jairo Beras followed with a strikeout that should've been the final out of the inning, but the pitch went to the backstop for a wild pitch that allowed Moore to score and the frame to continue. Asheville then brought in reliever Jerry Vasto, who gave up a 2-RBI double to Eduard Pinto to put the 'Dads up 5-1.
Williams finished it off from there, as the Crawdads closer sat Asheville down in order in the 9th to give the 'Dads the 5-1 victory and the SAL Championship.
Mendez (1-0) earned the win for Hickory with one run allowed on 9 hits, one walk, and 8 strikeouts over 5.1 innings pitched. Chatwood (0-1) took the loss for Asheville after allowing two runs, one earned, on one hit, three walks, and 2 Ks. Filomeno finished with 1.2 scoreless frames, Tate tossed a shutout inning, and Williams was perfect in the 9th.
Cardona finished the night 1-4 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored, while Moore went 1-4 with an RBI and Pinto ended the game 1-4 with a double and 2 RBI.
The championship marks the third title in Crawdads franchise history and the first since the 'Dads won in both 2002 & 2004.
- Thanks 'Dads