Pickles Walk Off Bells Again to Sweep Series
Portland, Ore. - The Portland Pickles treated another sell-out crowd at Walker Stadium to another walk-off win, scoring twice in the bottom of the ninth to defeat the Bellingham Bells 6-5 in the last home game of the regular season.
Sam Novitske (Oregon)'s single - the fourth consecutive of the inning for Portland - scored Jace McKinney from second base to win the game against Bells hard-throwing righty Ben Leeper (L 4-1). Carson Breshears (Gonzaga) tied the game with an RBI-single in the previous at-bat that scored pinch-runner Brody Barnum (Washington State).
Noah Cardenas (UCLA) got the rally started with a one-out single off Leeper, a ground ball to right field, and McKinney followed with a single to left, setting the stage for Breshears.
The win improves to the Pickles to 33-15 overall, giving them a 2-1/2 game cushion on Bellingham (30-17) for the best overall record in the West Coast League. Home field advantage for the WCL championship series is determined by best overall record.
The walk-off was the second of the series for the Pickles who took down Bellingham 3-2 in extras on Friday night. The two teams each swept the other in their respecitve home stands, splitting the season series 3-3, with Portland outscoring Bellingham 20-19 in the contests.
The Pickles have won six in a row, and improve to 21-5 at Walker Stadium in the regular season. They finish with six games on the road ahead of the WCL playoffs, beginning Friday in Port Angeles. The Pickles and Gresham GreyWolves will meet for three non-league games this Tuesday through Thursday.
Follow the team on Facebook as well as Twitter and Instagram @PicklesBaseball. Watch home games via the team's Facebook Live feed and listen to games online on the listen live link at PortlandPicklesBaseball.com.
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