I-5 Toyota/Mountain Dew earned a win on Friday but lost three straight games on Saturday and Sunday in senior legion baseball action east of the Cascades over the weekend.
In Friday’s game, I-5 Toyota defeated Hanford 8-2. Eli Brown started on the mound and was relieved by Camden Ryan in the sixth and Drew Rose finished the game in the seventh inning.
At the plate, Sawyer Burdick had two hits and Max Miller knocked in two runs.
Hanford scored the first run on the game in the second inning, but I-5 Toyota gained the lead with two runs in the fifth and secured the win with four runs in the sixth inning.
On Saturday, I-5 Toyota faced Yakima Valley in a doubleheader in Selah and lost the first game 12-2 in six innings. Rose started the game on the mound and Jackson Hull came on in relief in the fifth inning. Ryan took the mound in the sixth inning.
Burdick and Teegan Zillyet each had two hits for I-5 Toyota.
Yakima Valley scored five runs in the first inning and added one run in each of the next three innings. The home team scored four runs in the sixth inning to end the game early.
It was more of the same in Game 2, as Yakima Valley won 12-2 in five innings. Benito Valencia started on the mound and Bodey Smith relieved Valencia in the fourth and pitched the rest of the game.
At the plate, Zillyet and Brown each had two hits.
Yakima Valley scored five runs in the first inning and tallied seven runs in the fourth inning.
On Sunday, I-5 Toyota wrapped up the weekend with a 12-10 loss to Yakima Valley. Hull started the game and was relieved by Brit Lusk in the fifth inning.
Carter Olsen and Brown each had two hits for I-5 Toyota.
I-5 Toyota scored two runs in the second inning but Yakima Valley plated five runs in the third inning to gain the lead and followed it up with four runs in the fourth inning and three runs in the fifth inning to gain a 12-4 lead. I-5 Toyota scored six runs in the top of the seventh but couldn’t quite complete the comeback.
“Camden Ryan’s been nursing a sore arm. We couldn’t pitch Burdick, sore shoulder. We couldn’t stay away from giving them the big inning. We should have won the game yesterday,” I-5 Toyota coach Tom Grunenfelder said. “We were a couple plays away from beating them 10-4. We’ve just have to cleanup some of that stuff and not let them have those big innings We were hitting the ball well going in but we left guys on base like crazy all four games. We just aren’t getting the clutch hits right now but we’ll be fine.”
I-5 Toyota hosts Longview on Tuesday at 7 p.m. at W.F. West before competing in the GSL Showcase starting on Wednesday, taking on the TC Saints at 8 a.m. at Borst Park in Centralia.
Rural Baseball Takes Down Sasquatch
TOLEDO — Todd Tabor let it all hang out for Rural Baseball Inc. on Saturday as he pitched his team to victory in both ends of a doubleheader here against the Centerfield Sasquatch. Thanks to a complete game effort by Tabor the Wranglers took the first game by a score of 2-0. The Wranglers offense rose to the occasion in the second game to help secure a 10-2 win.
Tabor, a freshman from Kalama, tossed seven innings in the first game while allowing just two hits and striking out nine Sasquatch hitters. Tabor, who demonstrated a master ability to mimic the windup of nearly a dozen Major League pitchers on the day, demanded the ball to start the second game and did not disappoint. Using his variety of wind-ups to mess with the timing of overanxious hitters Tabor pitched four more innings while allowing just two runs to earn the victory.
“Everyone sort of followed Tabor’s lead on the day, which is quite an accomplishment for a baby faced freshman,” said Rural Baseball Inc. coach Jordan Nailon. “He was breathing rarefied air through his eyelids and his defense played flawlessly behind him. It was good baseball stuff.”
Nailon noted that Kaden Harrington did an excellent job behind the plate blocking balls and calling pitches with Tabor. Mekhi Morlin and Jackson Hull each went 2-for-3 and scored a run in the opening game. Chase Staup and Jesse Towns each added a hit to the Wranglers tally.
In the nightcap, the Wranglers offense went unconventional with ten runs on just five hits. They used a series of bunts in the fourth inning to fluster the Sasquatch defense and wound up with four runs in the frame. Morlin, Hull, Harrington, Matt Kurzeika, and Chris Heikkila all had hits for Rural Baseball in the game.
Morlin and Cody Towns combined to toss three scoreless innings of relief to nail down the victory.
“We threw a ton of strikes today and played pretty clean defense. Tabor’s tempo and flair for the dramatic really helped to keep the guys engaged,” Nailon said. “Besides that, we remembered how to bunt today. We can’t all be home run hitters all the time. That’s science.”
Rural Baseball will host the Gorge Bandits for a doubleheader at Toledo on Wednesday beginning at 4 p.m.