STOCKTON, Calif. - It took four runs over the final two innings to give the Stockton Ports their first come-from-behind victory of the 2014 season on Wednesday night. The Ports plated two runs in the eighth and two runs in the ninth to squeak out a 5-4 victory over the Lake Elsinore Storm at Banner Island Ballpark.
Stockton's offense got off to a fast start as Daniel Robertson homered to start the bottom of the first and give the Ports a 1-0 lead. Stockton, however, wouldn't score again until the eighth inning. Storm starter Bryan Rodriguez would allow just three more hits after the homer to Robertson and go on to receive a no-decision, going six innings and allowing just the one run while walking three and striking out three.
The Storm answered Robertson's home run with a solo homer to lead off the second from Casey McElroy to tie the game at 1-1. Lake Elsinore took the lead for the first time in the third. With the bases loaded and one out, Hunter Renfroe hit a sac-fly to left to score Reynaldo Bruguera and make it a 2-1 conest.
Ports starter Josh Bowman would allow two more runs in the fifth inning. With two on and one out, Renfroe doubled to left to plate a third run and make it 3-1. Two batters later, Diego Goris hit a sac-fly to left to increase the Storm lead to 4-1.
Bowman would go on to receive a no-decision, going five innings and allowing four runs on six hits while striking out a season-high seven.
Stockton's bullpen, a combination of Kris Hall, Jonathan Joseph and Jeremy Barfield (1-0) combined to pitch four scoreless innings of relief, with Barfield picking up his first professional win after working a perfect top of the ninth.
Trailing 4-1 in the bottom of the eighth, the Ports began to rally against Storm reliever Christopher Nunn. Nunn gave up a leadoff single to Matt Olson and a double to Billy McKinney to put runners at second and third. After striking out Dusty Robinson, Lake Elsinore summoned Bryce Morrow from the bullpen. Morrow gave up a sac-fly to Ryon Healy and then an RBI single to Ryan Gorton that cut the Ports deficit to 4-3. Both runs that scored in the inning were charged to Nunn.
Trevor Gott (0-2) came on to pitch the ninth and try for his sixth save in as many chances. After getting the first out, Gott gave up a broken-bat single to Renato Nunez. After getting Olson to fly out for the second out, Gott walked McKinney and then gave up a game-tying single up the middle to Robinson that knotted the game at 4-4. With runners at the corners, Healy came up next and hit a comebacker off the mound that deflected to the right side of the infield. Storm first baseman Luis Domoromo fielded the ball but had no play as McKinney crossed with the winning run, giving the Ports a 5-4 come-from-behind victory. Gott suffered his second loss of the season for Lake Elsinore.
The Ports and Storm wrap up their four-game series on Thursday night at Banner Island Ballpark. Tim Atherton (2-0, 3.86 ERA) makes the start for Stockton, opposed by Lake Elsinore right-hander Joe Ross (1-1, 2.11 ERA). First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. PDT.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.