Cubs’ Class-A Short-Season affiliate Eugene Emeralds defeats Hillsboro Hops to advance to Northwest League Finals
The Eugene Emeralds advanced to the Northwest League Finals late Friday night with a 2-1 victory over two-time defending champs Hillsboro Hops. The Ems held off the Hops late for the one-run win to move on and play for a championship.
Three Cubs affiliates played in win or go home games on Friday night. Myrtle Beach and Eugene advanced to their league championship series. South Bend’s game with West Michigan was suspended after the seventh inning due to weather and will resume Saturday afternoon (3:05pm CDT) in the eighth inning tied at three.
Erling Moreno picked up the win for the Emeralds on Friday night. Moreno gave up one run on six hits with three walks and seven strikeouts in five innings. Jed Carter and Michael Knighton kept the Hops off the board in the sixth and seventh innings. Knighton picked up the first two outs in the eighth before Jesus Feliciano turned to Wyatt Short with the tying run at third base. Short induced a grounder to third base to end the eighth inning.
Short gave up a double to Ben DeLuzio to start the ninth. Short struck out Jason Morozowski swinging and got Mark Karaviotis to ground out to Wladimir Galindo at third base for the second out. DeLuzio moved up to third with two down representing the tying run. Josh Anderson fouled out to Robert Garcia in right field to end the game … and send the Ems to The Ship.
Emeralds’ pitching held the Hops hitless with runners in scoring position. The Hops were 0-for-15 on Friday night with runners in scoring position and left 11 men on base.
The Emeralds took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on a Wladimir Galindo sacrifice fly to center that plated Yeiler Peguero. Hillsboro tied the game at one in the top of the second against Moreno.
Wladimir Galindo drove in the game winner in the third inning when he grounded out to short with Yeiler Peguero at third base. Peguero scored and gave the Ems a 2-1 lead.
Eugene turned three double plays on Friday night that played a big role in the one-run win over Hillsboro and the best team in the Northwest League advancing to the finals.
The Eugene Emeralds will take on the Everett AquaSox (Seattle Mariners) in the best of three finals that begin on Sunday at Everett. Game two, and three if necessary, will be played on the Ems home field, PK Park.
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