08/31/07 — Mudcats fall at home

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Mudcats fall at home

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on August 31, 2007 2:44 PM

ZEBULON -- A four-run first inning propelled Tennessee past Carolina 5-2 in the season's final series-opener before 4,372 fans at Five County Stadium on Thursday night.

James Russ (1-6) shut down the Smokies (35-31) after the first, but allowed four hits to four left-handed batters -- including a two-run double by Kyle Reynolds.

Trailing 4-0 in the fourth against Kevin Hart (8-5), the Mudcats (30-36) scored an unearned run with two outs on a throwing error by Reynolds at third to score Jai Miller.

Grant Psomas hit his 17th home run of the season against reliever Mitch Atkins in the seventh, but the Smokies scored an insurance run against Chris Mobley in the ninth for the final margin.

Russ worked 61/3 innings in his final start of the season. His only win occurred against Tennessee on June 26th.

With the victory, the Smokies pulled to within 1/2 game of the Northern Division lead paced by Huntsville in the second half, with Chattanooga closing to within 11/2 with four to play.

The series continues tonight.