SPRINGDALE, Ark. Emmanuel Rivera doubled in the winning run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning Monday as the Northwest Arkansas Naturals edged the Midland RockHounds 3-2 in Texas League action at Arvest Ballpark.
The Naturals took a 2-0 lead in the fourth on Samir Duenez’s first home run of the season. Midland pulled even in the seventh on Jonah Heim’s RBI single and Kevin Merrell’s sacrifice fly.
In the ninth, Northwest Arkansas’ Blake Perkins singled with one out before Midland reliever Zack Erwin (1-2) got Gabriel Cancel to hit into a force play. Rivera, who went 2 for 4, lined a 2-1 pitch into right field to drive in Cancel.
Andres Sotillet (1-1) allowed two runs on four hits over three innings to pick up the win in relief. Naturals starter J.D. Cloney worked six shutout innings, giving up three hits and striking out three.
Midland’s Daulton Jefferies worked three scoreless innings in his second start since being promoted from Stockton. Logan Verrett, who gave up Duenez’s homer, struck out five in five innings.
Chase Calabuig went 3 for 4 for Midland, while Nate Mondou was 2 for 4 with a double.
The teams wrap up the four-game series at 11:05 a.m. Tuesday before the RockHounds host Frisco on Thursday to open a four-game set at Security Bank Ballpark.