Salem Red Sox (copy)

CAN’T STOP HIM: Jarren Duran’s magical season continued on Friday.

The Salem center fielder went 4 for 4 and sparked the game-winning rally with a hit in the seventh inning, leading the Red Sox to an 8-6 victory over Winston-Salem in front of an announced crowd of 3,664 at Haley Toyota Field.

The Sox (18-28) won for just the third time in 11 games.

NO TIME TO WASTE: Duran’s hitting streak was in no jeopardy of ending on this night.

On the opening pitch in the bottom of the first inning, Duran lined a clean base hit up the middle to extend his run to 16 games.

Duran added three more singles and a walk for his second consecutive game with at least three hits and his 12th such performance of the season. The Long Beach State product raised his average to a Carolina League-best .422.

Duran was the only qualifying player the affiliated minors who entered Friday with an average north of .400.

BOUNCING BACK: After the Dash scored two runs in the top of the seventh inning to tie the game at 6-6, the Sox responded with a pair of their own.

Duran led off the frame with an infield single, beating out the throw from deep in the hole at shortstop. He moved to second on a sacrifice bunt, took third on a wild pitch and scored on a Pedro Castellanos single.

Later in the inning, Tanner Nishioka was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to force home another run.

GOING OPPO: Playing in his fifth game for Salem, outfielder Marcus Wilson went 3 for 3 with a walk and three RBIs.

Wilson capped Salem’s four-run first inning with a three-run homer to the opposite field — just the third hit by a Sox player at home all season.

A speedy player with pop, Wilson was acquired by Boston on April 19 in the trade that sent catcher Blake Swihart to the Padres.

WIN REMAINS ELUSIVE: Staked to an early 6-0 lead, Sox starter Jhonathan Diaz labored through his five-inning stint, allowing four earned runs on seven hits and two walks.

He left with a 6-4 lead but didn’t factor in the decision after the Dash rallied against the Sox bullpen. Diaz remained winless in five May starts and saw his ERA climb to 7.52.

LOOSE ENDS: Nishioka finished with three RBIs … Right-hander Andrew Schwaab (1-0) picked up the win with 2 2/3 scoreless innings of relief, allowing no hits and one walk while striking out four.

ON DECK: The Sox and Dash play the second game of their four-game series at 6:05 p.m. Saturday, with Salem RHP Dylan Thompson slated to face Winston-Salem LHP Cristian Castillo.

Aaron McFarling joined The Roanoke Times in 2000 and has been writing sports columns since 2004.

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