San Diego 8, Arizona 7

June 1, 2003 at 7:16 AM
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SAN DIEGO, June 1 (UPI) -- Lou Merloni's sacrifice fly scored Gary Bennett in the eighth inning Saturday night as the San Diego Padres collected a season-high 16 hits and posted an 8-7 triumph over the Arizona Diamondbacks.

San Diego won for just the sixth time in 29 games in May and for just the fourth time this season in their final at-bat.

The victory came after Luther Hackman and Jesse Orosco (1-1) failed to protect a 6-4 lead in the eighth. Hackman was charged with two runs after Orosco gave up an RBI double to Matt Williams and a two-run double to Alex Cintron.

However, the Padres overcame the shaky relief pitching when they scored twice in their half of the eighth.

Scott Service (0-1) gave up back-to-back singles to Gary Matthews Jr. and Bennett. Mike Myers gave up pinch hitter Mark Loretta's game-tying single and rookie Oscar Villarreal surrendered Merloni's sacrifice fly.

The Padres scored five times on seven hits in the first inning off Elmer Dessens. They had nine hits through two inning and seemed on their way to a rare easy win.

But the Padres, who have lost three games when leading after seven innings, including a pair to the Milwaukee Brewers earlier in the week, mustered just two hits off Dessens thereafter.

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