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PCL West-leading Aviators take four of six from best team in PCL East

Updated: Jul 16, 2022

It was about as good of a showing as you could ask against the best team in the Pacific Coast League East for Las Vegas.

The Aviators recently took four of a possible six games away from the Oklahoma City Dodgers this past week from Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.

While Oklahoma City leads the PCL East, the outing means the Aviators continue to hold onto first place in the PCL West.

Las Vegas is currently 47-36 and sit three and half games ahead of the Reno Aces of the Arizona Diamondbacks organization. In addition, the team sits nine and half in front of the Salt Lake Bees of the Los Angeles Angels organization.

After the four road wins in six tries, the Aviators are now 21-20 as they prepare to head back home to Las Vegas Ballpark.

Upon returning home, Las Vegas will be greeted by Salt Lake for a six-game home series with the first game slated for Tuesday, July 12.

First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

In between, the Aviators will have back-to-back scheduled off-days for the first time this season.

Monday, W, 12-4

Fourth of July fireworks came in the form of an eight-run fourth inning for Las Vegas on the way to a series opening win against Oklahoma City.

One player even made his mark on the contest after muscling out two longballs.

The first six players reached in the fourth inning with four coming across to score. It was an RBI double from second baseman Nate Mondou that scored designated hitter Dermis Garcia, who hit an RBI sacrifice fly later in the same frame.

Immediately after Mondou’s 15th double of the year, catcher Austin Allen swatted a three-run home run over the outfield fence driving in Mondou along with left fielder Billy McKinney. Earlier in the first inning, McKinney drove in the game’s first run on an RBI single.

The longball was the fourth of the season for Allen but he would strike an inning later for his fifth homer of the year.

His second home run scored Mondou again after he walked to reach base, putting Las Vegas up by double-digits in the process. Allen went 2-for-4 with two home runs, five RBI, two runs scored and a strikeout.

Pitcher Adam Oller made his first appearance since a three-week stay in the big leagues with the Oakland Athletics but earned the no decision in his return.

Oller gave up a run on two hits in four innings of work, tallying four strikeouts and a walk.

Pitcher Parker Dunshee got his second win of the year in his third relief appearance of the season but was roughed up in 4 ⅓ innings of work, allowing three runs on six hits while striking out three and walking four.

Dunshee (2-7, 7.77 ERA) had lost six of his last nine outings with his last win coming on May 4.

Tuesday, W, 8-3

In the league’s only game on the day, the Aviators added another win over the Dodgers from Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.

It was a 5-0 start for the road team topped with a three-run eighth for insurance runs. Moreover, Las Vegas got the win without the use of any home runs a night after getting two from catcher Austin Allen.

Second baseman Nate Mondou stayed hot with a two-run single with two outs in the second inning for his second run-producing hit of the series.

He added to his night with another two-run single in the sixth inning to put Las Vegas up 5-0 en route to a 4-for-6 night with three singles, a double, four RBI, a run scored and a strikeout.

Mondou has five RBI through the first two games of the series and seven RBI in the last three games.

Third baseman Matt Davidson also added an RBI single with two outs in the fifth inning for his 33rd RBI of the year.

Starting pitcher Collin Wiles (6-6, 5.36 ERA) got another win after pitching six scoreless innings, yielding four hits with four strikeouts and two walks.

Over the last four games, Wiles is 3-1 with quality starts in all four outings. He is averaging 6.75 innings per outing during this four game stretch.

Oklahoma City scored all three of its runs in the seventh and ninth innings but insurance runs from Las Vegas in the eighth was the difference.

Designated hitter Austin Allen walked with the bases loaded, allowing Mondou to score.

Catcher Shea Langeliers added two final runs on a two-run single for his 38th and 39th RBI of the night.

Wednesday, L, 10-7

Las Vegas lost several leads in the third of six scheduled games against Oklahoma City as the Aviators dropped their first game of the series.

The Dodgers got the 10-7 nod after the Aviators lost leads of 2-0, 6-4 and 7-6 after the home team scored four unanswered runs to steal the victory.

Oklahoma City responded to a two-run top half of the first inning with a four-run bottom half that included five straight hits as part of six straight runners reaching base.

Las Vegas starter Jared Koenig was blemish free until the fifth inning while his team even snagged him the lead in the third inning.

The Aviators scored four runs in the third inning on run-producing hits from third baseman Matt Davidson, right fielder Billy McKinney and shortstop Kevin Smith.

All the hits were doubles as Davidson’s and Smith’s drove in a run apiece while McKinney’s two-bagger knocked in two.

However, Koenig coughed it up in the fifth on a two-run home run to tie the game at six all.

Oklahoma City first baseman Ryan Noda was responsible for the longball and that would go down as the first of two on the day for him.

His second home run gave the Dodgers the lead for good, coming off Las Vegas reliever Norge Ruiz, who suffered his first loss of the season. He’s now 4-1 on the year after giving up three runs on three hits in two innings of work with two strikeouts.

Noda recorded seven RBI by himself in the win for the home team.

Thursday, L, 11-2

Down 9-0 before scoring their first run, the Aviators dropped its second straight game to the Dodgers, tying the series at two apiece through the first four of a scheduled six-game series.

Las Vegas starter Jack Cushing was worn out again after allowing nine runs on nine hits in 4 ⅔ innings of work while tallying four strikeouts and three walks.

Three of the nine hits were home runs, coming in the first, fourth and fifth innings.

Over the last two games, Cushing has allowed 13 runs on 17 hits, five home runs, in 8 ⅔ innings pitched with 10 strikeouts and three walks.

This season, Cushing is 1-2 with a 12.79 ERA in Triple-A after going 6-1 with a 3.19 ERA in 10 Double-A starts this year.

The lone scoring scenario for the road team came off the bat of left fielder Vince Fernandez, who hit a two-run double in the sixth inning. Right fielder Billy McKinney and first baseman Dalton Kelly both scored runs.

Fernandez went 1-for-3 with a double, two RBI, two strikeouts and two walks.

As a team, the Aviators drew eight walks but left 11 men on-base after going 1-for-13 with runners in scoring position.

Friday, W, 10-3

Moonshots made a return to the Aviators lineup as the home run gave the team an early lead that it would not relinquish.

Right fielder Billy McKinney shined on the night, showing strong hitting prowess with two outs.

It started when he drove in two on his sixth home run of the year with two out in the second inning to give the road team a 2-0 lead.

McKinney also drove in two more runs on a single with Las Vegas facing its final out of the road team’s half of the ninth inning.

He ended the night 3-for-4 with two singles, a home run, four RBI and two runs scored.

Fellow outfielder Vince Fernandez also went deep in the third inning, driving in two more runs after center fielder Cristian Pache walked with one out in the frame.

That was the lone hit in four trips to the plate for Fernandez.

Pache also got in on the action in the fourth inning when his double drove in three runs before being brought home on an RBI single from catcher Shea Langeliers.

Since coming to Las Vegas, Pache is batting .375 after a 1-for-4 night with a double, three RBI, three runs scored and a walk.

In the home half of the second inning, Aviators’ spot starter Garrett Acton tallied three strikeouts while working around a one-out single.

Las Vegas used seven pitchers on the night as the group recorded 11 total strikeouts, with all but two recording one.

Reliever Aaron Brown (3-3) got the win and led all Aviator pitchers with four strikeouts on the night versus two walks.

Saturday, W, 4-3

In the series finale against the best team in the Pacific Coast League East, Las Vegas was able to snatch its fourth win in six tries against Oklahoma City.

The Aviators scored in three straight innings early in the game for a quick 4-0 lead in a game where the team needed every single run.

Left fielder Vince Fernandez secured a leadoff home run to right field to open the second inning and the scoring for the day. It was his 10th of the year and now has moved into a tie with outfielder Dalton Kelly for second on the team

Designated hitter Shea Langeliers extended his team lead in the home run category after a solo blast with two outs the following inning. He now leads the team with 15th big flies.

With that, the Aviators had successfully knocked Dodgers starter Andre Jackson out of the game and onto an 0-6 start to the season.

Las Vegas got the one-run win despite striking out 11 times. Over the last two games, the team has struck out 23 times yet both were wins.

Starter Adam Oller went 4 ⅔ innings, working around two runs on six hits while striking out five and walking one.

He did not get the win as reliever Parker Dunshee (3-7, 7.57 ERA) picked up his second straight win.

Dunshee gave up a run on two hits in three innings of work while recording six strikeouts and three walks.

He now has wins in back-to-back appearances after not having a win since May 4.

Fellow reliever Garrett Acton relieved Dunshee, getting the final out of the inning, picking up his third hold of the season. He has an 0.00 ERA after pitching 11 innings in eight appearances this year.

Yesterday, he was the starter in the team's 10-3 win over the Dodgers.

Lastly, reliever Jacob Lemoine got his first save of the year after yielding a hit in his lone inning of work.


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