De La Cruz leads Dragons past Lugnuts

Dragons shortstop Elly De La Cruz met with local media for the first time Wednesday at DayAir Ballpark. Bench coach Juan Samuel (left) translated for De La Cruz. Alexa Sandler/Dayton Dragons

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Dragons shortstop Elly De La Cruz met with local media for the first time Wednesday at DayAir Ballpark. Bench coach Juan Samuel (left) translated for De La Cruz. Alexa Sandler/Dayton Dragons

Elly De La Cruz hit a home run and added two doubles and three RBI to lead the Dayton Dragons to a 10-8 victory over the Lansing Lugnuts on Sunday. The two clubs split the six-game series.

Dayton collected a season-high nine extra base hits, including home runs by De La Cruz and Jonathan Willems. Their 14 total hits was also a season high.

The Dragons improved to 22-10. They are in first place with a lead of 3 1/2 games over Great Lakes.

The Dragons scored four runs in the third inning to take a 4-1 lead as Willems and De La Cruz each hit two-run home runs.

De La Cruz added a run-scoring double in the fifth inning to give the Dragons a 5-2 lead, and they added three more runs in the top of the seventh to jump ahead 8-2. Doubles by Ashton Creal and De La Cruz got the inning started before Rece Hinds delivered a run-scoring single and Allan Cerda added an RBI double.

Lansing battled back with four runs in the bottom of the seventh to make it 8-6, but the Dragons responded with two in the top of the eighth to extend their lead to 10-6. Alex McGarry’s two-out, two-run triple was the big hit in the inning. Lansing closed out the scoring with single runs in the eighth and ninth innings.

Big contributors to the Dragons 14-hit attack, along with De La Cruz and Willems, were Jack Rogers, who had a double, triple, walk, and two runs scored; Cerda, who added a single, double, walk, and RBI; Creal, who had three hits including a double with a walk, three runs scored, and a stolen base.

TUESDAY’S GAME

Quad Cities at Dayton, 7:05 p.m., 980