Walla Walla Sweets close, but lose eighth straight in 14th


KELOWNA, British Columbia - Kelowna first baseman Kyle Pearson was waiting for an opportunity to run home from third and finally got it as a pitch got far enough away in the 14th inning to allow him to score from third.

He just beat the throw home and in doing so gave the Kelowna Falcons an 8-7 victory over the Walla Walla Sweets at Elks Stadium.

Pearson started the inning with a double to left field and moved to third on a sac bunt.

A strikeout had him still standing there as the 1-2 pitch from Sweets reliever Eric Yardley bounced a few feet away from catcher Kevin Hawk.

Pearson took his chance and sprinted home, just beating the tag from Yardley and giving the Falcons the win.

Up until then, both bullpens had held. Walla Walla's Aaron Hoverson started in the ninth and pitched 3 1/3 scoreless innings, and Yardley had already worked out of two jams in the 12th and 13th.

He struck out Jeff Melby with the bases loaded in the 12th and got out of a runner-on-third-and-one-out jam in the 13th with a ground out and a fly out.

Kelowna's Brandon Marris was matching them pitch-for-pitch.

The right-hander came on in the 11th and allowed just two baserunners the rest of the way, an error in the 11th and a hit batter in the 13th.

He struck out four and has now thrown five scoreless innings against the Sweets in two days.

Walla Walla held two leads in the game, but had to rally in the ninth to send the game to extras.

Trailing 1-0 in the fourth, Austin Heaps singled in Elliot Stewart with two outs, an error at first base scored a second run and Andrew Mendenhall made it 4-1 with a two-run double to left-center.

The Sweets coughed up the lead, allowing Kelowna to score four in the fourth as well but answered with single runs in the fifth and sixth to take the lead.

Alex Stanford singled, stole second, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on a Stewart ground out to short.

Scott Gottschling matched him in the sixth by starting the inning with a single, stealing second and then scoring on a Hawk single to center.

The Falcons did not go away. With two outs and none on in the seventh, they rallied and got a big two-run double from Dillon Bryant to take the lead, 7-6.

Facing that margin in the ninth, Stanford ripped a leadoff double down the right-field line, moved to third on a Chance Kopacz ground out and scored as Wentz knocked a two-out single through the left side.

Walla Walla has now lost eight straight games heading into today's series finale.

After playing for four and a half hours Monday, the two teams face each other again at 6:35 p.m. today in game three of the series.

Falcons 8, Sweets 7

Sweets 000 411 001 000 00 - 7 11 4

Falcons 100 400 200 000 01 - 8 10 3

Watson, Overbay (4), Litchfield (7), Hoverson (9), (Mack 11), Yardley (13) and Hawk. Miller, Trewin (7), Paterson (7), Stafford (7), Bowen (9), Marris (11) and Stoup.

HR - Kel: Pearson.

Hits - WW: Stanford 3, Kopacz, Stewart, Wentz, Gottschling 2, Heaps, Hawk, Mendenhall. Kel: Swinford 2, Joe, Folkinga, Pearson 3, Bryant, Stoup, Melby.


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