Davidson Leads Charlotte Past G-Braves

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Matt Davidson went 3-for-5 with two doubles and four RBIs to lead the Charlotte Knights (22-20) to an 8-6 victory over the Gwinnett Braves (20-22) on Thursday night at Coolray Field.

Davidson, who singled in the third and doubled in the fifth and ninth innings, now has an International League-best 28 RBIs on the season.

Jason Bourgeois put the Knights up 7-2 in the seventh with a two-run home run off David Peterson, but Ozzie Albies cut into the lead with a two-run double in the bottom of the frame. It was the first multi-RBI game for Albies since joining the G-Braves on April 30.

Anthony Recker brought Gwinnett within one at 7-6 with a two-run home run in the eighth, his first homer for the G-Braves and third on the season after hitting two for Columbus earlier in the year.

But Davidson’s second RBI double of the night scored Omar Narvaez from first base with two outs in the ninth, giving the Knights breathing room.

Michael Ynoa (S, 3) got the G-Braves in order in the ninth to preserve the victory for Chris Volstad (W, 3-3). Volstad, who began Spring Training with Atlanta, allowed two runs on six hits in 5.0 innings while striking out three and walking one.

Blake Smith and Will Lamb combined to allow four runs on six hits over the next 3.0 innings for Charlotte, but the Knights did enough against G-Braves’ starter Ryan Weber (L, 0-2) and Peterson to offset the damage.

Weber, making his second start of the season, yielded two runs on six hits over 4.0 innings, throwing 43 of his 67 pitches for strikes. Bourgeois and Davidson collected consecutive RBI singles off Weber in the third inning to put Charlotte ahead 2-0. Peterson gave up five runs on five hits over 2.1 innings, raising the Knights’ lead to 7-2.

The G-Braves fought back to score twice in the fifth, closing the gap to 4-2. Rio Ruiz began the inning with a double into the left-field corner and Sean Kazmar Jr. followed with a double, his into the right-field corner to plate Ruiz. After Recker grounded out, Brandon Snyder bounced a double over the bag at third base, scoring Kazmar Jr.

Kazmar Jr., Recker and Snyder each finished with two hits apiece and Kazmar Jr. and Recker each scored twice. Albies also picked up two hits, going 2-for-5 with the pair of RBI for Gwinnett. Adonis Garcia went 1-for-5 with a double, extending his hitting streak to 13 games.

Gwinnett concludes the brief two-game series with the Charlotte Knights at Coolray Field on Friday night at 7:05 p.m. The G-Braves will send Lawrenceville native Lucas Sims (0-3, 6.39 ERA) to the mound, while the Knights will counter with right-hander Anthony Ranaudo (0-0, 2.25 ERA). Tony Schiavone and Nick Green will have the play-by-play call on 97.7 FM at 6:35 p.m.

Following Friday’s game, stick around for FOX 5 Friday Night Fireworks. Tickets are on sale now at the Coolray Field Ticket Office, call 678-277-0340 or visit GwinnettBraves.com/tickets to purchase.

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