By Circles Robinson
HAVANA TIMES, March 6 — Santiago looked like another team on Friday and blanked Villa Clara in a 10-0 game called after seven innings on the mercy rule.
Alberto Bicet pitched a complete game allowing only five hits to get the win for the home team.
The game was actually a close pitching duel with a 1-0 score until the bottom of the fifth. Then Santiago sent losing pitcher Freddy Asiel Alvarez to the showers after allowing five more runs including a grand slam by right-fielder Alexei Bell, his eighth of the season. Bell had six RBIs on the evening.
Shortstop Luis Navas had a perfect 3-for-3 and scored three runs and second baseman Hector Olivera had two hits, scored twice and knocked in a run, to help the Santiago cause.
Villa Clara, with a 3-2 series lead, now returns home for the sixth and possible seventh game.
The winner will play Ciego de Avila for the Eastern Division title. The other match-up in the West is between defending league champions Havana Province and Industriales.