The Houston Astros are one game away from winning the World Series after beating the Philadelphia Phillies 3-2 to take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series.
Both teams scored early, but Jeremy Pena’s fourth-inning homer gave the Astros a 2-1 lead in Philadelphia.
Yordan Alvarez kicked off another run for Houston in the eighth, but Jean Segura did the same for the Phillies to set up a tense final at Citizens Bank Park.
However, Astros pitcher Ryan Pressly kept his cool to complete the win.
Closer Pressly, who threw a five-out save in the bottom of the ninth, was indebted to center fielder Chas McCormick — a Pennsylvania native and childhood Phillies fan — who took a stunning leap over the top of the fence.
After a day of travel on Friday, the series returns to Houston for Game 6 on Saturday and a possible deciding seventh on Sunday.
While the previous four games had all featured a team taking a five-point lead, Wednesday No Hitter was followed by an absolute nailbiter.
Jose Altuve started the first inning with a brace, got to third base on a field error, and was hit by Pena on only the fourth pitch of the night.
Not to be outdone, Kyle Schwarber smashed only the second pitch the Phillies faced over the right field fence to even the score.
Pena’s solo homer restored Houston’s lead and ended the game for pitcher Noah Syndergaard, with the Phillies opting for a ‘enclosure game’ rather than using a conventional starter.
Astros ace Justin Verlander allowed four hits and walked four batters, but struck out six and used all his experience to go five innings and turn that narrow lead into the bullpen.
Frustratingly for Houston, Yuli Gurriel reached third base with no outs in the seventh inning but was injured in a collision with a fielder when he was caught in a disrepair as his teammates failed to manufacture a run .
After Alvarez made it 3-1, the Phillies rallied in the bottom of the eighth as Segura led Nick Castellanos for 3-2.
Both teams then blocked several base runners as the tension mounted, but manager Dusty Baker’s bet to go to Pressly early paid off to put the Astros on the verge of a second title in six years.