The Peninsula Oilers outlasted the Athletes in Action Fire on Saturday night at Coral Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai, taking a 5-3 victory in 14 innings in Alaska Baseball League action.
The win allowed the Oilers to stay in first place in the ABL. Peninsula is now 5-1 in the league and 10-3 overall. The second-place Mat-Su Miners also won Saturday night, improving to 7-2 in the league. AIA is 5-7 and 8-7 overall.
The Oilers take today off, then play at the Anchorage Bucs on Monday at 7 p.m.
The Oilers constructed the winning rally in the top of the 14th, since Peninsula was the visiting team on the scoreboard. Manny Acosta started the inning with an infield single, then Nate Ring bunted for a single. Chris Mallory then popped out trying to bunt, but Patrick Wisdom was hit by a pitch to load the bases.
Troy Channing then walked to force in a run. After Zach Kirksey flew out, Tanner Rust singled to center to score two. Another run scored on an error before Rust was thrown out trying to go to second.
The Oilers tied the game at 1-all in the top of the eighth inning. Mallory led off the inning with a triple, then Wisdom scored Mallory with a double. The double chased AIA pitcher Andrew Work in favor of Ben Heller.
Heller gave up a single to Channing, but Wisdom was held at third. The AIA reliever then struck out Kirksey, Rust and Jeff Yamaguchi to end the threat.
The Fire were poised to end the game in the bottom of the ninth inning, but Rust was able to throw an AIA player out at the plate from the outfield.
In the 13th, some misfortune cost the Oilers a run. Wisdom led off with a single against Heller, then Channing belted a ground-rule double to center field. Wisdom would have easily scored on the play, but the ball went under the fence in center field. That meant Wisdom had to return to third.
Michael White came in for Heller. White got Kirksey to ground out to first. With the infield in, Wisdom had to stay at third.
Rust was then walked intentionally to load the bases and set up a double play. That was not necessary as Yamaguchi struck out looking and Ryan McChesney grounded out to second.