FAIRBANKS, AK-The Goldpanners are hosting the San Francisco Seals an independent collegiate baseball club in a five game series this week. Last night was game one.
Both teams displayed good defense and pitching through the first three innings which went scoreless. Mikey Ramirez out of Arkansas-Pine Bluff threw a no hitter through three for Fairbanks but the fourth inning is where things got interesting.
Joey Capistran relieved Ramirez but the Seals lit him up with four hits and five runs in the fourth including a bases clearing triple by that made it 5-0 seals. The Goldpanners fought back with three runs of their own in the bottom of the frame. The Seals added two insurance runs in the seventh and win 7-3 bringing the Goldpanners to 4-4-1 on the season.
What's interesting about the Seals winning is that after their flight to Anchorage from Alemeda, California they literally came off the bus and starting playing.
"We're kinda known for that, we do it once in a while. Our boys came out to play and they gave it their best today and after that long 10 hour bus ride and I'm proud of 'em," Seals coach Jake Gans said. "We never play a five game series so it's a good start and it'll give us some nice momentum going into this midnight game that you guys have going on. So it's good news for us."
Bryan Harris, in his first season as head coach for the Goldpanners knows it will take a little time for his team to come around.
"Yeah, I'll take that as a learning curve for me. I'm still trying to know my players and what they're capable of doing. But from the offensive standpoint, battling back was huge from the aspect of the Panners," Harris said.
Keep in mind the Goldpanners are continuing to fill their roster as more college players become available.
Nick Catalano, a freshman center fielder out of Oregon and right handed pitcher Michael Dingilian of Cal Poly are expected to be on the roster today. Also Casey Munoz of Santa Clara will be on joining the Panners. The junior right fielder has played in two Midnight sun games. One as an opponent in 2011 as a member of the Oceanside Waves and one with the Goldpanners last year. Alex Rubanwitz, a sophomore infielder from the University of California Riverside, is due to arrive Thursday.