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Five-run fourth propels Bisons to 6-1 win


The Bisons scored five times in the fourth inning and held the high-powered Bulls offense to just four hits in a 6-1 win on Sunday night at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Jason Leblebijian and Jake Elmore each drove in a pair during the big rally as the Herd avoided a sweep at the hands of the IL South division leaders.

Buffalo entered the fourth trailing 1-0 and without a base runner over the first three frames of the game. But the Herd took advantage of their second look at Bulls' starter Brent Honeywell as Darrell Ceciliani broke through with a lead-off single and moved to third on Christian Lopes' double. Dwight Smith Jr. pulled Buffalo even when his shallow fly into left was caught by shortstop Willy Adams. With Adams moving away from the infield, Ceciliani alertly raced home to tie the score.

The Bisons kept the rally alive by loading the bases as Mike Ohlman walked and Rowdy Tellez singled sharply to center. That set the stage for the Bisons' RBI leader and Leblebijian delivered with a ringing double to right field. Lopes and Ohlman scored to give the Herd a 3-1 advantage and Leblebijian 15 RBI in only 21 games this year.

Elmore capped off the big inning with a single through the right side of the infield, scoring two more and giving the Bisons a 5-1 lead.

That was plenty for Luis Santos and a trio of Bisons' relievers. Santos picked up his first career Triple-A win by striking out four and allowing just three hits over five innings of work. John Stilson, Matt Dermody and Leonel Campos combined to add six more punchouts while only allowing one hit. The Bulls, who led the International League with a .271 average coming into Sunday's game, did not have a hit in four chances with runners in scoring position.

With the win, the Bisons finished April with a 14-8 record and a game and a half lead on the Red Wings for first place in the International League North Division. The Herd will welcome Rochester to Coca-Cola Field for the first three games of a six-game homestand starting Tuesday night.