PORTLAND – A deep start by prospect Casey Kelly and a game-tying home run in the seventh inning weren’t enough to secure a victory for the Portland Sea Dogs on Friday night.

Instead, the Richmond Flying Squirrels marked their Hadlock Field debut with a 7-4 win, breaking a 4-4 tie in the eighth with three runs on three hits and a pair of wild pitches by reliever Mitch Herold.

“We got a couple of big hits and it seemed to be a game of a few momentum shifts,” said Richmond Manager Andy Skeels.

“This is a great little park. I loved the atmosphere. … I thought we just did a good job of taking advantage of a few mistakes.”

The Sea Dogs took leads of 1-0 and 3-1 before trailing 4-3 after a fifth-inning rally by the Flying Squirrels, formerly the Connecticut Defenders.

Kelly put together his longest outing of the season, going 62/3 innings. He gave up three earned runs on seven hits, one walk and a hit batsman, and had one strikeout.

“I think I was throwing my fastball well and I settled in as the game went on,” Kelly said. “They just got a few hits where we weren’t.

“A couple balls bounce different ways, and we have five, six wins these last 10 (games).”

The Sea Dogs, just 2-8 in their last 10, left four runners on base and went 3 for 9 with runners in scoring position.

“We just haven’t put it all together as a team,” said Manager Arnie Beyeler. “One night we hit. One night we pitch. Tonight we didn’t play very good defense late.

“We shot ourselves in the foot late in the game. That happens with young guys, and we’re getting into the back end of the season.”

Portland trailed 4-3 before right fielder Chih-Hsien Chiang homered to center field in the seventh to tie the game.

After he circled the bases, a clip of former teammate Ryan Kalish hitting a two-run homer in Friday night’s game against the New York Yankees flashed on the video screen in right-center.

The Flying Squirrels went up 5-4 in the eighth when third baseman Conor Gillaspie singled to left with one out and runners on first and third.

Shortstop Ryan Lormand bunted to score a sixth run before a wild pitch allowed another and gave Richmond a 7-4 lead.

Shortstop Ray Chang doubled to score Che-Hsuan Lin in the first inning to give the Sea Dogs a 1-0 lead.

Richmond tied it in the third on a double by Clay Timpner that drove in catcher Tyler La Torre.

Portland scored a pair in the third on a double by second baseman Nate Spears that drove in Lin and a single by first baseman Anthony Rizzo that scored Spears.

But the Flying Squirrels scored three in the fifth on four hits and an error to go up 4-3.

Kelly got out of the inning when Thomas Neal lined out to shortstop and Chang threw to first to double up Nick Noonan.

Staff Writer Jenn Menendez can be contacted at 791-6426 or at:

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