EL PASO, Texas – The Sugar Land Space Cowboys scored four runs in a nine-batter top of the fifth inning Saturday and beat the El Paso Chihuahuas 7-3.

The teams have split the first two games of the 2023 Pacific Coast League season.

El Paso starter Anderson Espinoza allowed four earned runs in four innings on four hits in his Chihuahuas debut.

One night after El Paso’s final four relievers pitched scoreless outings, Saturday’s final three relievers (Sean Poppen, Tom Cosgrove, Eric Hanhold) all didn’t allow any runs.

Chihuahuas third baseman Tim Lopes went 1-for-4 with a solo home run, his second homer in as many games. It’s the second year in a row that an El Paso player has homered in the first two games of a season. Trayce Thompson did it in 2022 for El Paso.

The rubber match of the three-game series is Sunday at 12:05 p.m.