(bisons.com) -Despite continuing to rally throughout their series opener in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, the Bisons just could not pull ahead of the RailRiders on the scoreboard. And in the end, the Herd's division rival would close out the night with a walk-off win.
Zoilo Almonte's walk-off double with two outs in the bottom of the ninth gave the RailRiders a 6-5 victory over the Herd on Tuesday night at PNC Field. The Bisons have dropped six of their last nine games and are now an even 9-9 on the season.
While the Bisons never led in the contest, the defeat was a hard one for a Buffalo club that continued to match Scranton/Wilkes-Barre punch for punch. The RailRiders scored in three consecutive innings from the third through the fifth, but each time the Herd answered right back.
Down 3-0 in the top of the fourth, the Bisons cut the lead to one when Dan Johnson scored on a Munenori Kawasaki bunt and Kevin Nolan touched the plate after a wild pitch from RailRiders starter Brian Gordon.
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre answered right back with a run in the bottom of the fourth only to have Johnson drive in Steve Tolleson with a sacrifice fly in the fifth. Down 5-3 in the sixth, the Bisons finally tied the game thanks to Nolan's RBI triple and Kawasaki's sac fly.
It was the chance the Bisons had before the RailRiders scored again that hurt the most. Before Almonte's walk-off winner, the Herd had a golden opportunity to take their first lead of the game in the top half of the ninth. Tolleson walked to lead off the inning and advanced to third on Chris Getz's single up the middle.
Johnson, the Buffalo's leading run producer this season, followed with a grounder to first base. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre's Russ Canzler alertly touched first base after fielding the ball and then threw home to catch Tolleson in a run down. Third baseman Scott Sizemore eventually applied the tag to the Buffalo runner to all but end the Herd's scoring opportunity with the doubleplay.
The loss for the Bisons went to reliever Ryan Tepera, who allowed Almonte's game-winner in the ninth. Ricky Romero started for the Herd and didn't walk a batter, but yielded four earned runs in five innings of work.