Spokane rally drops Hops into tie for first
The thrill of victory turned into the thrill of victory for the other team on Saturday, as the Hillsboro Hops coughed up a two-run lead in the ninth inning and lost 10-9 on the road to the Spokane Indians.
One night after scoring three times in the top of the ninth to win at Spokane, the Hops gave up three runs in the bottom of the ninth.
The Indians rallied against Hops closer Erbert Gonzalez, who slipped to 5 for 6 in save opportunities with the Class A club.
Hillsboro dropped into a first-place tie with the Eugene Emeralds in the South Division, both 13-11 with 14 games to go in the first-half race.
And Spokane (9-15) leads the series 2-1 going into Sunday's 3:30 p.m. game.
A five-run top of the second inning gave Hillsboro a 7-2 lead before 5,704 at Avista Stadium. The big blow was a two-run home run by Bryan Araiza.
Spokane chipped away with a run in the bottom of the second and fourth. A three-run fifth pulled the Indians even at 7-7.
An RBI single by Eudy Ramos in the sixth put the Hops ahead 8-7.
Mitchell Aker, the Hops' starter, went four innings. He gave up five runs on seven hits (two home runs) and one walks, with three strikeouts.
Hillsboro would end up using four relievers, and Gonzalez (0-1) took the loss, allowing four hits and three runs in two-thirds of an inning.
A single to right field by Clay Middleton scored the winning run from third.
In other NWL league games on Saturday: Eugene downed visiting Tri-City, 8-4; Salem-Keizer defeated host Everett, 10-8; and Boise won at home over Vancouver, 11-3.
One game behind Hillsboro and Eugene in the NWL South is Boise (12-12), and Salem-Keizer improved to 11-13.