MANCHESTER, N.H. – The New Hampshire Fisher Cats now have six walk-off victories thanks to Jon Berti’s ninth-inning inside-the-park home run, giving New Hampshire a 7-6 victory over Erie on Sunday afternoon.
The two teams traded three-run innings early on, highlighted by home runs from Erie’s Willi Castro and New Hampshire’s Patrick Cantwell.
Josh Lester’s 12th home run of the year gave Erie the lead back in the third and they’d keep that lead until the sixth. There, New Hampshire obtained RBI doubles from Forrest Wall and Bo Bichette, providing a tenuous 6-5 lead.
Another key double arrived in the seventh, this time from Castro, putting Sergio Alcantara into position to head home on a harmless grounder later in the inning. Although Alcantara advanced, Castro was trapped at second, where he would be stranded, leaving the game in a 6-6 deadlock.
The contest remained there until Berti’s leadoff at-bat in the ninth, a first pitch blast that looked like it would be caught by a jumping Daz Cameron. However, the jump was mistimed and Cameron didn’t come up with the ball, providing time for the speedy Berti to make his way around the bases, giving New Hampshire their winning moment.
It was a tough day for both starting pitchers, with New Hampshire’s Tyler Saucedo giving up five earned runs off ten hits in six innings and Erie’s Alfred Gutierrez allowing four earned runs off nine hits in five innings.
The win would ultimately go to New Hampshire closer Travis Bergen for his work retiring the final four Erie batters of the day.
John Schreiber was the loser of record, falling to 1-6 on the season after his single pitch to Berti in the ninth.
At the plate, every Fisher Cat except for Cavan Biggio had a hit, with Wall and Andrew Guillotte contributing three hits and Cantwell getting two. Erie obtained two-hit days from Alcantara, Castro, Cameron and Cam Gibson.
The Fisher Cats return to action on Tuesday as they head to Maryland for a contest against the Bowie Bay Sox. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.