MANCHESTER, N.H. — The Portland Sea Dogs fell in the late innings 3-2 to the New Hampshire Fisher Cats in the opener of a four-game series Thursday night at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.
The Sea Dogs (63-35) dropped their sixth road game in a row, but are 11-5 against the Fisher Cats (45-52) this season.
The contest entered the bottom of the seventh, tied at 2-2, before the Cats jumped in front for the first time. Dalton Pompey roped a double down the right field line to begin the inning against Wilfredo Boscan. Derrick Chung followed with a ground ball to first, which Stefan Welch misplayed, allowing Pompey to score and make it 3-2.
Down 3-2 in the ninth, Portland put its leadoff man on thanks to a single to left by Welch. Pinch-runner Derrik Gibson took over at first, but overran the bag at second when Jonathan Roof hit a sacrifice bunt to the pitcher and it turned into a double play. Mike Brenly walked to extend the inning, but Sean Coyle struck out to end the game.
Portland jumped out to an early lead, three batters into the game, against Scott Copeland and the Fisher Cats, courtesy of Michael Almanzar’s two-run home run.
Portland’s Luis Diaz retired the side in order in the first, striking out two. The righty allowed the first three to reach in the second inning, but induced a fielder’s choice and struck out another pair to end the threat.
The Cats put the first three batters on in the third resulting in a run. Matt Newman did the damage with an RBI single to center, which plated Dalton Pompey and cut the lead to 2-1.
Andy Fermin connected on the first pitch from Diaz in the fifth inning and hit a rope over the right field wall for a game-tying solo homer.
Diaz finished five innings and allowed just the two runs on seven hits; he walked two and tallied seven strikeouts. Boscan (1-4) took the loss, going three innings and allowed the go-ahead run, albeit unearned, on two hits, a walk, hit batter, and two strikeouts.
Copeland did not factor into the decision for New Hampshire, but produced a quality start. He went the first six and allowed the two runs on six hits; he walked one and struck out three.
John Anderson and Gregory Infante pitched the final three innings in scoreless fashion to lock down the Fisher Cats victory. Anderson (3-1) took home the win with two scoreless innings and Infante recorded his 12th save of the season.