SACRAMENTO, Calif.— The Reno Aces used a pair of home runs and a dominant relief performance by Bo Schultz to grab a decisive 7-3 win over the Sacramento River Cats Sunday night at Raley Field.
The Aces and River Cats will play the regular season finale Monday afternoon with the Pacific Northern Division title on the line. The winner will represent the division in the Pacific Coast League Playoffs and the loser’s season will be finished.
Facing elimination, Reno jumped out to another early lead following a similar pattern all series. Mike Jacobs led off the second inning with a solo home run to right-field, his 19th of the season. It was Jacobs’ 222nd RBI in an Aces uniform, setting a new franchise record.
A four-run rally started in the third when Andy Marte delivered a two-run single, scoring Bobby Wilson and Nick Ahmed. Later in the inning, Chris Owings scored on a passed ball, and Danny Dorn drove in Marte with a fielder’s choice to up the Aces’ lead to 5-0.
Mark Serrano made a spot start in place of Mike Bolsinger who was placed on the disabled list before the game. He worked into the third inning and left after an RBI single by Jose Martinez. Bo Schultz relieved Serrano with the bases loaded and retired Alden Carrithers on a popup to end the inning.
Schultz went on to throw 4 2/3 innings in relief. He allowed one run in the role, a solo homer to Martinez in the eighth inning. By that time the Aces had extended their lead to 7-2 thanks to a two-run blast by Roger Kieschnick in the sixth inning. Schultz did not issue and walk and struck out three in his tenth win of the season.
Jake Barrett came in for the ninth inning and closed out the win for the Aces. Nick Buss made it a 7-3 game with a sacrifice fly but Barrett retired Jed Lowrie on a fly out to center-field and Daric Barton on a groundout to end the game.
The season finale, game number 144, is set for Monday afternoon at Raley Field. The Aces will send right-hander Charles Brewer (8-10, 5.24) to the mound and the River Cats will counter with right-hander Arnold Leon (10-7, 5.12). First pitch is scheduled for 1:05 p.m.
Tickets for potential playoff games at Aces Ballpark are on sale now. For tickets, visit RenoAces.com or call (775) 334-7000. For up-to-date news and notes throughout the offseason, visit www.RenoAces.com, follow the club on Twitter (@aces) or like the team on Facebook.