Oilers 3, Goldpanners 2, 11 innings
Michael Hoo scored from second on a single from Mike Wieland in the bottom of the 11th inning Tuesday to thwart a comeback effort from the first-place Fairbanks Goldpanners and prevail 3-2 at Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai.
The Oilers led 1-0 after a first-inning RBI-single by A.J. Ramirez, but pitching ruled the diamond until the top of the ninth, when the Goldpanners rallied for a 2-1 lead on a 2-run single from David Fletcher.
The Oilers clawed back for a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the ninth when Dillon Dobson tripled and later scored an unearned run from third base on a Goldpanners throwing error.
Oilers starter G.J. Strauss struck out six in eight scoreless innings of work, but reliever Dylan Silva earned his second win after striking out two in a scoreless 11th.
FAIRBANKS — The Alaska Goldpanners staged a dramatic rally against the Peninsula Oilers, but ended up with a 3-2 loss in 11 innings Tuesday in the opener of an Alaska Baseball League series in Kenai.
The Panners outhit the Oilers 9-5 but the extra-innings defeat at Coral Seymour Memorial Park was their third loss in a row following a four-game winning streak. The Panners slipped to 16-9 for a first-place tie with the Mat-Su Miners, which won 7-4 Tuesday over the host Chugiak Chinooks.
The Panners were down 1-0 through eight innings and had been limited to two hits — singles by Alex Rubanowitz in the top of the second inning and Chance Abrath in the sixth — against Oilers starter GJ Strauss.
The Panners’ offense awoke in the top of the ninth with David Fletcher’s two-run single, the only hit in five at-bats for the sophomore shortstop from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.
Fletcher brought home Abrath, who led off with a double, and Casey Munoz, who was pinch running for Jim Sinatro, who had been walked by Oilers relief pitcher Brody Greer.
Kevin Sprague, taking over for Panners reliever Matt Milke, had two outs, after putting out Taylor Tempel and striking out Michael Hoo.
Sprague got in trouble after giving up a triple to Dillon Dobson and a walk to Mike Wieland. Dobson scored the tying run after Kyle Hunt reached base on an error by Panners first baseman Rubanowitz.
Oilers closer and eventual game-winner Dylan Silva retired the Panners’ side in order in the top of the 11th, striking out Kyle Herrington and Rick Reigner and getting Fletcher to fly out to Peninsula first baseman Dobson.
Panners reliever Andrew Buehler took the loss after giving up Hoo’s game-winning run in the bottom of the 11th. Hoo led off with a single and scored one out later on Wieland’s single.
Buehler, the Panners’ fifth pitcher on Tuesday, also had a strikeout in a 1 1/3-inning stint.
Goldpanners starter Michael Bennett gave up a one-out double in the bottom of the first to Jake Alvarez, who scored on single by AJ Ramirez.
Bennett allowed three hits and struck two during three innings. Joey Capistran scattered three hits, struck out three and walked one for 3 2/3 innings and Milke struck out two while pitching perfectly for 1 1/3 innings.
Strauss had six strikeouts and allowed a walk during his stint for the Oilers.
The Panners and the fourth-place Oilers (14-12) play a doubleheader today, starting at 5 p.m., and close their series with a 6 p.m. game Thursday.