Oilers wallop Bucs

The Peninsula Oilers did their part once again Wednesday night to close the gap to the Alaska Baseball League leading Mat-Su Miners, but once again, their efforts were in vain.

The Oilers cruised to a comfortable 7-3 win over the Anchorage Bucs at Coral Seymour Memorial Park, but after starting the day two games back of the leading Miners, Peninsula made up no ground as Mat-Su picked up a 12-1 win over the Anchorage Glacier Pilots.

However, the Oilers clubhouse isn’t looking too far into the standings just yet.

“It’s kind of how you win championships,” said Peninsula coach Brian Daly. “We have new guys stepping in to replace injured guys and they’re getting the job done.”

One year ago, the Oilers started hot but faded as the summer stretched on. This year, a spate of consistency has led to a nice little run of six wins in their last seven league games.

“This group is getting it together,” Daly said. “The guys are having a blast, they were joking around on the bus on the way back from (Anchorage) the other day. … The camaraderie goes a long way.”

The Oilers improved to 17-13 in the ABL, good for second-best, and 22-19 overall. The Miners lead the league with a 20-12 mark.

A five-run spurt in the fifth inning spelled doom for the Bucs, who faced 10 Oilers batters in the frame.

Oilers designated hitter Jonathan Washam continued his hot streak on offense by hitting 3 for 5 with a double and two RBIs, bringing his season average to .376 and giving him six base hits over the last two days.

“I’m just not trying to do too much,” Washam said. “Right now it’s just staying true to who I am, and maybe getting a little lucky.”

Washam played his role in the fifth inning with an RBI double to give the Oilers a 2-0 lead. Washam then scored on a bases-loaded walk by Bucs pitcher Drew Gooch. Brody Wofford drew another walk to force in another run, then Austin Piscotty reached on a throwing error by Gooch that allowed Seth DeWitt to score and stretch the lead to 5-0.

Washam later tacked on another run with an RBI single to center field in the bottom of the eighth that pushed the Oilers lead to 7-3.

Wofford opened the scoring with a home run in the bottom of the fourth. Steven Sensley equaled the feat in the top of the sixth to put the Bucs on the board for the first time.

Justin Montgomery (3-2) started for the Oilers and gave up three runs on four hits in 6 2-3 innings of work. Montgomery, a freshman out of Cal Baptist University, struck out five while issuing four walks.

“He’s been great so far,” Daly said. “He’s only getting stronger and he’s been trying to fine-tune some things.”

Daly said Montgomery’s ability to throw an accurate fastball helps to set him up for later innings, when batters typically have a starter figured out.

“He throws a solid four pitches, and a couple times through the order, the pitches are completely different,” Daly said.

Yi-Hsin Huang gave up a hit in 1 1-3 innings of scoreless relief, Evan Kissinger gave up a hit in two-thirds of an inning, and Ryan Lillie finished the job in a two-pitch outing, ending the game with a pop fly to right field. The save gave Lillie seven on the year.

A close friend of Lillie’s, Washam said the momentum of the team is something he hopes Peninsula can harness with the season winding down.

“We’re one team, and we swing well if we get that first guy on base,” Washam said.

The win was the first of a six-game homestand with the Bucs. The two teams will continue the series tonight at 6 p.m. at Coral Seymour.

Wednesday

At Coral Seymour Memorial Park

Oilers 7, Bucs 3

Bucs AB R H BI Oilers AB R H BI

Htch, ss 4 1 1 0 Hill, cf 4 1 0 0

Ksl, 2b 3 0 0 0 Dwsn, ss 4 1 1 0

Snsl, cf 4 1 1 1 Wshm, dh 5 1 3 2

Hrrs, lf 3 0 1 2 Dwtt, 1b 4 1 0 0

Mlts, ph 1 0 1 0 Wfrd, lf 3 2 2 2

Rnds, dh 5 0 1 0 Cprn, 2b 3 0 1 1

Ttm, 3b 3 0 0 0 Psty, 3b 4 0 0 0

Hrd, rf 4 0 0 0 Hbr, c 4 0 1 1

Ard, 1b 3 1 1 0 Sfrt, rf 4 1 1 0

Gnt, c 3 0 0 0 —

Totals 33 3 6 3 Totals 35 7 9 6

Bucs 000 001 200 —3

Oilers 000 150 010 —7

HR — Sensley (4), Wofford (1). SH — Kasuls (0). SB — Hill (4), Seifert (4). E — Kasuls 2 (3), Sparling (1), Dawson (6).

LOB — Bucs 11, Oilers 9.

IP H R ER BB SO

Bucs

Gooch, L 4.2 5 6 4 4 5

Sparling 2.1 3 0 0 0 1

Reid 1.0 1 1 1 1 0

Oilers

Montgomery, W 6.2 4 3 3 4 5

Huang 1.1 1 0 0 0 0

Kissinger 0.2 1 0 0 1 0

Lillie, S 0.1 0 0 0 0 0

T — 2:42.

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