Panthers use ninth inning homerun to edge Jackfish Pitchers duel at The Pond

By ROD MAWHOOD • Photo by Brandon Taylor

It was a pitcher's duel personified Wednesday night at Welland Stadium.

And in the end, the Kitchener Panthers prevailed 3-2. 

Ben Abram, in his first start for the Jackfish, went the distance throwing 124 pitches including 84 for strikes, while Yami Perez pitched eight strong for the Panthers tossing 131 pitches - 77 for strikes.

"Ben was great tonight," Welland Manager Brian Essery expressed. "Both starters threw very well. Our pitching has been great over the past month."

Yunior Ibarra's ninth inning solo shot proved to be the difference for Kitchener.

Clutch hitting, and runners left on base, once again hurt the Jackfish who left seven men on. 

"Ya, we've really been struggling with runners in scoring position," added Essery. "It's something that we have to break out of."

Hogan Brown and Carlos Martinez both had two hits apiece for Welland, while Matteo Porcellato led off the game with a first-pitch solo homerun over the wall for his first long ball of the season. 

The Jackfish will try and snap a rare two-game losing streak in 2023 when they host the Hamilton Cardinals Thursday night for Country Night at The Pond. 

First pitch flies at 7:25 pm, and tickets are available at 

"We have to get our bats going," said Essery.