Chicago Cubs through to the National League Championship Series once again
Last Updated: 13/10/17 7:55am
The Chicago Cubs remain on course for back-to-back World Series titles after beating the Washington Nationals 9-8 in a thrilling National League Division Series decider.
The epic win gave the Cubs a 3-2 victory in the series and sent them through to face the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL Championship Series, which gets underway on Saturday.
The Cubs trailed 4-1 at one point, then led 8-4 and 9-6, before eventually completing the win in a game that lasted four hours, 37 minutes and ended after midnight on Friday.
Addison Russell produced two hits and four RBI for the Cubs, who scored four runs off star Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer in a pivotal fifth inning.
The Nationals had a chance to tie the game in the eighth, but backup catcher Jose Lobaton, who entered the game for starter Matt Wieters, was picked off first for the last out.
The winning pitcher was Cubs reliever Brian Duensing (1-0), who recorded two outs without giving up a run, while Chicago closer Wade Davis was heroic, allowing one run but getting the final seven outs for his third save of the series.
Michael A. Taylor impressed again for Washington, hitting a three-run homer in the second and adding an RBI in the eighth to make it 9-8 as he finished with four runs driven in for the second game in a row.
But it was all to no avail, as Washington made it four first-round exits in four play-off appearances since 2012.
Washington starter Gio Gonzalez allowed three runs in three innings while his Cubs counterpart Kyle Hendricks went four innings and gave up four runs on nine hits