Sonoma Stompers Walk-Off San Rafael Pacifics 12-11, Take Hard-Fought Series

 Scott David scores the winning run for the Sonoma Stompers in the to Sunday's 12-11 win over the San Rafael Pacifics at Peoples Home Equity Ballpark at Arnold Field. (James W. Toy III / Sonoma Stompers)

Scott David scores the winning run for the Sonoma Stompers in the to Sunday's 12-11 win over the San Rafael Pacifics at Peoples Home Equity Ballpark at Arnold Field. (James W. Toy III / Sonoma Stompers)

SONOMA, Calif.– The Sonoma Stompers Professional Baseball Club, presented by Virginia Dare Winery, took the last game of a hard-fought series against the San Rafael Pacifics on a walk-off error. 

"It's just a testament to how great of a team we really are and how we're not going to let anybody in this league determine how we play our game," said catcher Isaac Wenrich.

The Pacifics bullpen, which put a cork in the Stompers offense Saturday night, proved porous Sunday. Down to two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Sonoma put together a four-run rally. A bases-loaded double down the left field line from Marcus Bradley was the boiling point, tying the game at eight and sending it to extras. 

"It's unbelievable," Bradley said. "I was just glad to get the tying run in for the team right there. I was just looking for something to hit to get at least one run in." 

In the tenth, Eddie Mora-Loera knocked a ball to Pacifics third baseman Brent Gillespie. Gillespie threw away the ball, allowing three runs to score and the Stompers to walk off. 

"We didn't give up. We came back," said Manager Takashi Miyoshi. "We tried to have a better approach in the end, especially the last two innings... We took pitches when we had to and just executed. They had too much pressure on them and they made a mistake defensively."

The Pacifics took an early lead Sunday, driving in four runs in the first inning. Gillespie, who hit two homers Tuesday night, hit a two-run shot off of Stompers starter Mike Jackson Jr in the frame. Gillespie, Mike Rizzitello and Jake Taylor, who drove in the other two first-inning runs, were the primary aggressors for the Pacifics all series. 

Gillespie ended up with his second two-home-run game of the series. A solo shot off of Adam Ogburn in the fifth put San Rafael up by three. 

The Stompers remain at first place in the Pacific Association and improve to 16-5 on the season. Next week, the Stompers face the Pacifics for another three-game set at home Tuesday-Thursday. 

"It's always good to come out and get that kind of win," Bradley said. "Now, we don't have to have an off day and be all sad. It feels good to beat them because they're our rivals."

 The Stompers don rainbow hats on the field as part of "Out at the Ballpark" Night Sunday at Peoples Home Equity Ballpark (James W. Toy III / Sonoma Stompers)

The Stompers don rainbow hats on the field as part of "Out at the Ballpark" Night Sunday at Peoples Home Equity Ballpark (James W. Toy III / Sonoma Stompers)

"OUT AT THE BALLPARK"
Stompers pitcher Sean Conroy became the first openly gay player in professional baseball history in 2015. On Pride Night that year, he pitched a three-hit shutout at Arnold Field in his first professional start. His groundbreaking story was recognized by the National Baseball Hall of Fame. 

"I think to see the support that he got, not only from the gay community but also just everybody here that understood what really was taking place that day, I think that's something that I'll take with me forever. And to catch it, I couldn't ask for a better opportunity. It was absolutely amazing," Wenrich said.

The Stompers celebrated Conroy's legacy and the LGBTQ community at "Out at the Ballpark" night Sunday. Wenrich was the starting catcher.

"For him to come out and throw a complete game on a day like that, the stars aligned," Wenrich said. "It wasn't just about Sean being gay, it was about him being an incredible baseball player also."

STOMPERS TICKETS
Tickets and merchandise are available now either online or at the fan shop at 234 W Napa Street in downtown Sonoma. Tickets will also be available at the box office on game days, beginning 30 minutes prior to the game.

For more information, please contact the front office at 707-938-7277, or email info@stompersbaseball.com.