NILES, OH (WKBN)- Nine innings was not enough on opening night at Eastwood Field. The Mahoning Valley Scrappers began their 18th season by falling to the West Virginia Black Bears by a final of 5-4 in 11 innings.
The Scrappers would strike first for the early lead. In the bottom of the third inning, Alexis Pantoja reached base on a fielding error with one out. After stealing second, Pantoja would come around to score on an RBI single by Luke Wakamatsu for a 1-0 lead.
Mahoning Valley pushed the lead out to 2-0 in the bottom of the third inning. With one out, Jodd Carter doubled. Carter would then come around to score on and RBI single from Gian Paul Gonzalez.
West Virginia would then strike back in the top of the fifth inning. With two outs Erik Forgione tripled into right field. Sandy Santos followed with an RBI double. Ty Moore was then hit by a pitch to put runners at first and second. Will Craig followed with an RBI single to tie the game 2-2. Albert Baur would then double to drive home Moore and Craig to put the Black Bears up 4-3.
With two outs in the bottom of the fifth inning Emmanuel Tapia brought the Scrappers back to within one run on his first homerun of the season. The towering drive to centerfield made it a 4-3 game.
The Scrappers tied the game in the bottom of the seventh inning. Wakamatsu started the inning with a base hit. A Tapia walk would move Wakamatsu to second. A wild pitch allowed Wakamatsu to move to third. On the play a throwing error would then bring Wakamatsu home to tie the score 4-4.
In the top of the 11th inning the Black Bears would score the final run of the game. Kevin Krause started the inning with a single. After a sacrifice bunt and a strikeout, Santos doubled to leftfield to score Krause with the eventual game winning run.
With the loss the Scrappers fall to 0-1 on the season. Devon Stewart (0-1) took the loss while Yunior Montero (1-0) earned the win for the Black Bears who move to 1-0.
The Scrappers and Black Bears will wrap up their series on Saturday night. Its Superhero night at Eastwood Field with special jerseys to be auctioned off for charity after the game. First pitch is set for 7:05pm with 2015 first round draft pick Triston McKenzie scheduled to start for Mahoning Valley.
COURTESY: MAHONING VALLEY SCRAPPERS