Centralia College used back-to-back walk-offs to complete a pair of comeback victories in a doubleheader against Green River on Saturday at Ed Wheeler Field, then swept the Gators again on Sunday in Kent.
Sophomore Nolan Wasson singled to right field in the bottom of the ninth in the front-end of Saturday’s doubleheader to drive in the game-winning run in a 4-3 victory.
In Game 2, Hayden Wilson’s suicide squeeze sealed the Blazers’ 3-2 victory over the Gators.
“Way closer than I would have liked,” Centralia College manager Ben Harley said. “It was entertaining, but we’ll take it. We play down a little to our competition. But credit to Green River, they’ve improved a lot since we first played them.”
In game one, Ayden Ruminski took the win after striking out two and allowing one run on two hits across two innings. Matt Obst started, going seven innings while surrendering two runs on three hits with seven Ks.
The Blazers tallied seven total hits on offense to Green River’s five. Wasson led the Blazers while going 3-for-5 with two RBI and a double. Matthew Beckworth was 2-for-4 with a run scored, while Caden Baker and Andrew Dalton each collected hits.
In game two, Trent Jackson’s sac-fly put the Blazers up 1-0 in the bottom of the first. The Gators plated two runs in the third before Baker smacked an RBI single in the bottom of the fifth to even the score at 2-2.
Jeremy Vierra led off the bottom of the seventh with a double, then Jaymz Knowlton pinch ran for him. An intentional walk sent Trent Jackson to first. Then Wilson, on his first pitch, laid down a bunt back toward the pitcher while Knowlton speeded home and slid under the tag for the walk-off.
“It was a fun way to win,” Harley said. “The guys battled the whole time.”
Nolan Patterson earned the win on the mound for the Blazers, going two innings while allowing one run on two hits with five strikeouts.
Centralia High School alum Derek Beairsto was solid as the starter, mowing down eight batters and allowing two runs on three hits with a walk.
The Blazers racked up eight total hits, led by Wilson going 3-for-4 with an RBI, while Vierra went 2-for-4 with a run, a double and a walk. Wasson scored twice and walked once and Jackson and Baker each drove in a run.
Centralia picked up two more NWAC West Region wins on Sunday in Kent, beating Green River 15-5 and 10-5.
The Blazers pounded out 11 hits in the 15-5 Game 1 win, with Andrew Dalton going 3 for 5 with a double and two RBI. Caden Baker was 3 for 4 and drove in a run, while Hayden Wilson doubled and knocked in four runs.
Jeremy Vierra added a hit with two RBI.
Josh Collett got the win on the mound, working five shutout innings and striking out five while allowing just two hits.
The nightcap was tied at 4-4 after seven innings to force extra frames, but Centralia scored six in the top of the eighth and held on for the 10-5 win.
Dalton hit a two-run homer to highlight the eight inning and finished 2 for 5 with a double. Nolan Wasson was 2 for 4 and Caden Baker was 2 for 2, while Derek Beairsto went 1 for 3 and drove in three runs.
Kobe Matsen worked the first six innings, striking out seven and allowing four runs. Colby Knutzen tossed two scoreless innings to close out the win, striking out one and allowing one hit.
Centralia College improves to 12-10 overall and is currently in third place in the Northwest Athletic Conference’s West Region. The last time the Blazers finished with a winning record was 2010 and the last time they finished in the top three in the division was 2005.
The Blazers host Pierce College in a doubleheader on Saturday.