Peninsula Oilers starting pitcher Luke Yacinich delivers to the Mat-Su Miners on Tuesday, June 22, 2021, at Coral Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Peninsula Oilers starting pitcher Luke Yacinich delivers to the Mat-Su Miners on Tuesday, June 22, 2021, at Coral Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Oilers’ Yacinich throws no-hitter

Staff report

Luke Yacinich pitched a no-hitter as the Peninsula Oilers snapped a seven-game Alaska Baseball League losing streak by defeating the Mat-Su Miners 5-0 in the second game of a doubleheader Tuesday at Coral Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai.

Yacinich, a 6-foot-6, 230-pound right-hander from Cornell University, walked just one batter, while striking out eight, in stifling the Miners for seven innings. Games are seven instead of nine innings in a doubleheader.

The Miners were only able to reach base three times in the game — once on the walk, once on an error and once on a dropped third strike.

In a postgame interview on 1140 AM, Yacinich gave credit to catcher John Hanley for getting the pitcher in a good rhythm, the defense and coaches for calling a good game.

The Oilers improved to 3-9 in the league with the split in the doubleheader, while the Miners drop to 9-6.

The Oilers went up 1-0 in the first when Cole Moore led off with a single and Henry Novicki singled with two outs to score Moore.

Peninsula stretched the lead to 5-0 in the sixth inning. Moore started the inning with a single and a walk by John Olmstead put runners on first and third one out. Henry Novicki singled to score Moore.

Garrett Pennington then ripped his second three-run home run of the doubleheader to left field.

Moore finished 3 for 3 with two runs, while Novicki was 2 for 3 with two RBIs.

In the first game, the Oilers scored the most runs they have in league play this season, but lost a lead late in a 6-5 loss. The 11 runs in the doubleheader were a great sign for the Oilers, because they had scored just 15 runs in 10 league games coming into Tuesday.

The Miners grabbed a 1-0 lead in the third inning when Josh Mrozek had a two-out single to score Jordan Williams.

The Oilers came back to tie it in the bottom of the fourth. Pennington led off the inning with a single, then eventually scored on a ground-out by Dylan Ditzenberger.

Peninsula then rallied for four runs in the fifth inning. With one out, Moore singled and scored on a double by Tyler Johnson. Olmstead then walked before Novicki grounded out.

Pennington then swung and missed at the first two pitches before blasting a three-run home run to left field for a 5-1 lead.

The Miners came right back in the top of the sixth inning. David Bermudez and Kevin Nakamura started the inning with singles. With one out, Aaron Walters singled to score Bermudez. Tyler Rando then doubled to score Nakamura.

Nick Cirelli walked to load the bases. Mike Ferrara singled to left field to score Walters, but Pennington threw out Rando at the plate to preserve the 5-4 lead.

Mat-Su then rallied to take the lead in the seventh inning. J.D. Urso and Nakamura each singled to put runners on first and second with one out. The Oilers brought in Alec Weigel, who walked the bases loaded.

Urso then scored on an infield single by Aaron Walters, while Ricky Nunez, running for Nakamura, scored on a ground-out from Tyler Rando for the 6-5 lead.

The Oilers got the tying run to second base in the seventh before the rally stalled.

Daniel Naughton started for the Miners and lasted 4 1-3 innings, giving up five runs — four earned — on five hits. Evan Wolf got the win by pitching 1 2-3 innings and giving up a run on a hit. Alex Magers closed the door in the seventh for the Miners.

Andre Orselli started for the Oilers and lasted five innings, giving up two runs on four hits. Henry Bird then gave up two runs on four hits in an inning. Dylan Crowley yielded two runs on two hits, while Alec Weigel did not give up a run in two-thirds of an inning, but allowed two crucial inherited runners to score.

Pennington finished 3 for 4 with two runs and three RBIs, while Moore and Johnson each had two singles.

The Oilers conclude a five-game series with the Miners tonight at 6 p.m. at Seymour Park.

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