Cubs ad­vance to NLCS

Cubs come back on Scherzer, Na­tion­als win 9-8 in NLDS Game 5

The Garden Island - - Morning Briefing - Howard Fendrich

WASH­ING­TON — Ad­di­son Russell drove in four runs, Wade Davis earned a seven-out save, and the Chicago Cubs reached their third NL Cham­pi­onship Se­ries in a row by edg­ing the Wash­ing­ton Na­tion­als 9-8 in a thriller of a Game 5.

The defending World Se­ries cham­pion Cubs trailed 4-1 be­fore scor­ing four runs in the fifth in­ning off two-time Cy Young Award win­ner Max Scherzer. They then led 9-6 and held on, with the help of Davis’ long­est ap­pear­ance since 2012 and a key pick­off by catcher Will­son Con­tr­eras in a game that lasted 4½ hours and ended af­ter mid­night Fri­day. Davis struck out a swing­ing Bryce Harper to fin­ish it off.

Chicago, which sur­passed its to­tal of eight runs in the first four games of the Di­vi­sion Se­ries, ad­vanced to face the Los An­ge­les Dodgers, who will start ace Clayton Ker­shaw at home in Game 1 of the NLCS on Satur­day night.

For man­ager Joe Mad­don and the Cubs, this was their fourth con­sec­u­tive vic­tory in a win-or-be-elim­i­nated post­sea­son game. That in­cludes three straight to end the 2016 World Se­ries, when Chicago trailed the Cleve­land In­di­ans 3-1 be­fore forc­ing a Game 7 won by the Cubs in 10 in­nings.

PABLO MARTINEZ MONSIVAIS / AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Chicago Cubs re­lief pitcher Wade Davis throws dur­ing the eighth in­ning in Game 5 against the Wash­ing­ton Na­tion­als, at Na­tion­als Park, early Fri­day in Wash­ing­ton.

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