With timely hitting and fielding, the Yakima Valley Pippins kept the Kelowna Falcons playing catch-up Friday night.

The Pippins set the table for their 7-5 win in Kelowna with a double celebration in the first inning, when Vince Fernandez -- who was celebrating his 19th birthday -- hit a three-run home run.

The Falcons got two runs back in the next two innings on an RBI triple by Brandon Grimsley, then an RBI double from Ryan Degner to pull within 3-2. But in the fifth inning, the Pippins extended their lead by two via a two-run RBI single from Mitch Skaggs.

Shawn Wardian capped off the Pippins scoring for the night with another two-run RBI single in the sixth inning to push Yakima's lead to 7-2.

Kelowna showed some life in the seventh inning, when Jaron Smith drove in two on a single, and in the eighth, when he hit another RBI single to finish out the game.

Eli Morgan (6-0) got the win for Yakima, which is now 23-17 and holding a two-game lead over the Wenatchee AppleSox in the West Coast League's East Division.

The Pippins and Falcons take the field in Kelowna again at 6:35 tonight. Pregame starts at 6:25 p.m. on 1460 ESPN Yakima.

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