The Hops latest win on their extended sojourn away from home pretty much followed the same script: late-arriving offense and clutch pitching from the bullpen.
Hillsboro scored three runs in the seventh inning to break a scoreless tie and Josh Green nailed down the final five outs for his ninth save of the season as the Hops defeated the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes 4-2 at Volcanoes Stadium Saturday night.
With the win, Hillsboro improves to 8-2 on its season-long 11-game road trip. The Hops have opened up a four-game lead over the Volcanoes and Eugene Emeralds, who will duke it out over the finale couple of weeks for the right to faace Hillsboro in the playoffs.
Jorge Perez pulled a ground ball inside first base and up the right field line for a two-run double in the seventh inning to put the Hops on the board. After Jake McCarthy raked a base hit to right, the Hops' two base stealing leaders pulled off a double-steal against the 2018 Johnny Bench Award Winner (catcher Joey Bart) and former West Coast Conference Defensive Player Of The Year (shortstop Nico Giarratano), with Perez trotting home after McCarthy beat Bart's throw to Giarratano at second.
The Volcanoes came back with two runs in the bottom of the inning on an RBI single by Giarratano and a sacrifice fly by Kyle McPherson. But Wesley Rodriguez retired Diego Rincones on a liner to second to strand the tying and go-ahead runs.
In the eighth, David Villar doubled off Rodriguez with one out. Green came out of the pen to fan Aaron Bond and Wander Franco to end the threat.
The Hops added an insurance run in the ninth courtesy of a Volcanoes' error, but Green didn't need it. After Dalton Combs led off with the Volcanoes' third double of the night, Green retired Ricardo Geneves on a liner to center, got Giarratano to ground out to second and McPherson, who nearly hit for the cycle against the Hops in a 15-1 July 4th massacre, grounded out harmlessly to Geraldo Perdomo to end the game.
Perez, McCarthy and and Tolbert each had two of Hillsboro's eight hits in the game.
Both starting pitchers threw well. Hillsboro's Matt Tabor tossed five scoreless innings, allowing two hits and a walk with two strikeouts. Seth Corry, a second-round draft pick last year out of high school, allowed three hits and no runs, fanning three with two walks.
The Hops and Volcanoes wrap up the series, and the road trip, with a 5:05 p.m. game Sunday. Catch live coverage on NBC Sports Northwest Rip City Radio 620 AM starting with the pregame show at 4:35.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.