PORTLAND — The Portland Sea Dogs rallied for two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to defeat the Altoona Curve, 2-1, Thursday night at Hadlock Field, earning an Eastern League three-game series sweep.

Portland has won seven straight home games, the first time the feat has been accomplished since the team became a Boston Red Sox affiliate in 2003. The Sea Dogs are 16-4 at home since the All-Star break.

Christian Marrero, in his fifth game with Altoona, swatted his first home run for the Curve with two outs in the second inning off Portland starter Jeremy Kehrt for a 1-0 lead.

Earning their seventh straight win at Hadlock Field was no easy task as Portland faced Gerrit Cole, the first overall selection in the 2011 First- Year Player Draft. The 21-yearold and top prospect in the Pittsburgh Pirates’ organization lived up to the hype, retiring the first 14 batters he faced and routinely hitting triple digits with his fastball.

Kehrt kept the Sea Dogs in the game, going 5.1 innings and allowing just the one run on five hits. He walked two and struck out four. Jason Urquidez relieved Kehrt with two on and one out in the sixth. After hitting

Marrero with a pitch, he struck out the next two Curve hitters to keep the Sea Dogs within one run.

The Sea Dogs rallied for two runs off Cole in the sixth inning. Christian Vazquez ledoff the inning with a single. With one out, Jackie Bradley Jr. reached on an infield single, with an error moving both runners up and base and into scoring position. Marquez Smith grounded out to second base, allowing Vazquez to score the tying run, and Bradley scored on a wild pitch for a 2-1 Sea Dogs lead.

The Sea Dogs host the New Britain tonight at 7 p.m. for the first of three games. Portland sends Stolmy Pimentel (4-6) to the mound against Rock Cats starter Luke French (2-0).