After dropping their second half opener on Thursday, the Huntsville Stars were shutout by the Jacksonville Suns by a score of 2-0 on Friday night at Bragan Field.
For the second consecutive start, Stars starting pitcher Ariel Pena took the loss when he came through with a quality start. The 24-year-old righty fell to 5-6 on the year after giving up five hits and two runs through six innings.
Pena put himself in line for the loss when he gave up a solo homer to Suns third basemen Ryan Fisher with two outs in the bottom of the fourth inning. The homer for Fisher marked the first hit of the night for Jacksonville against Pena.
Two innings later, the Suns struck again with the longball off of Pena as shortstop Danny Black left the yard with a solo shot to put Jacksonville up 2-0. The two homeruns given up by Pena puts him at nine for the season, a total that leads the Stars pitching staff.
Unfortunately for Huntsville, that run support was plenty for the Jacksonville pitching staff.
In his Double-A debut, Jacksonville righty Anthony Descalfani dazzled in his first start in a Suns uniform. The Miami Beach, Florida native gave up just two hits in six innings while striking out five batters to improve to 1-0 on the year.
To ensure Descalfani a victory in his Double-A debut, righty Arquimedes Caminero threw two scoreless innings and southpaw Grant Dayton struck out the side and stranded a runner in the ninth inning for his first save of the season.
On offense, first basemen Jason Rogers had three of the Stars four hits on the night. The only other hit on the night came on a double from third basemen Mike Walker.
Aside from Pena, Jacksonville-native Casey Medlen pitched two scoreless innings in relief in his return to his hometown.
The loss for the Stars marked the sixth time this year that they have been shutout offensively. It was also their shortest nine-inning game (2:16) this season.
The Stars and Suns will play game three of a five-game series at Bragan Field on Friday. Huntsville will send RHP Taylor Jungmann (7-6, 4.13 ERA) to the bump as Jacksonville will counter with RHP Jay Jackson (2-4, 2.91 ERA). First pitch is at 7:05 ET.
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