Reno, Nev.— Chris Roberson’s two-run home run in the third inning gave the Aces a 4-1 lead early, but they couldn’t hold it as the Las Vegas 51s pulled off their second-straight extra-inning win, defeating Reno 5-4 Thursday night at Aces Ballpark.
The Aces jumped on top early on an Orlando Mercado RBI single in the second inning. Abramam Nunez singled later in the inning to give the Aces a 2-1 lead, before Roberson extended the Aces lead to 4-1 an inning later with a towering shot off the scoreboard in left field. The 51s chipped away, scoring one run in the fifth, sixth and ninth innings, sending the game into extra frames for the second time in as many nights. Las Vegas took the lead for good in the tenth, and Reno could not come back in the home half of the frame.
The Aces got a strong outing from starter Cesar Valdez, who took a hard-luck no decision after tossing five innings of two-run ball. Abe Woody (1-2) was tagged with the loss after giving up the tying and go-ahead runs.
After Roberson’s home run in the third, the Aces were held scoreless the rest of the way by 51s starter Brian Burres and a trio of relievers. Rommie Lewis (1-0) earned the win for the 51s, and Bubbie Buzachero (2) earned his second save in as many nights.
Trent Oeltjen and Rusty Ryal each had two hits for Reno, which pounded out 10 hits but could only muster four runs.
Game three of this five-game set will be Friday night, with Reno sending RHP Tony Barnette (6-7, 6.40 ERA) to the hill against Las Vegas RHP TJ Beam (4-2, 3.81 ERA). First pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m.
Friday’s game is the ninth of sixteen between Nevada’s two Triple-A teams. The winner of the season series will win the inaugural Silver State Diamond Challenge trophy, as well as contributing to the embarrassment of the opposing town’s mayor, as he will have to wear the winning team’s jersey to a City Council meeting. The SSDC is quietly becoming the talk of the state.
Friday night is also a Silver Legacy/El Dorado Fireworks Friday Night, presented by KOLO 8, with a fireworks show immediately following the game.