Prep Baseball: Titans Win Second Straight

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Sophomore pitcher Garrett Keaton struck out seven batters in 6.2 innings as Pe Ell-Willapa Valley won its second straight in an 8-4 victory over Ilwaco in Pe Ell on Friday.

“Garrett pitched really well again,” PWV coach Kelly Barnum said.

Other than a two-run second inning, Keeton was able to keep the high-scoring Fishermen in check, even though they jumped on his fastball all night, Barnum said. Keeton got out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the first as the Titans struggled defensively for the first couple innings.

“We’re notoriously slow starters,” Barnum said. “That’s been our M.O., in my five years as coach here. It’s a constant battle we have as coaches.”

But once the Titans began connecting on Ilwaco pitches, the tide began turning in their favor.

Freshman Blake Howard cracked a game-high three hits on 3-for-4 batting while junior Joseph Krafcyk was 3-for-4 with three RBIs and a bases-clearing double. Gavin Hampton drove in another two runs for the Titans and Keeton was 2-for-4 at the plate. 

PWV collected 12 hits and had on error on defense, while Ilwaco tallied 10 hits with three errors.

“There were a ton of hard-hit baseballs,’ Barnum said. “It was pretty cool coming off the Northwest Christian game.”

PWV (2-1) travels to South Bend for a doubleheader with Raymond-South Bend (1-2) at 3 and 5 p.m. on Tuesday.

Errors Prove Costly for Tigers

Centralia was unable to overcome three errors, two of which resulted in Shelton runs, during a 4-0 defeat to the Highclimbers on the road Friday.

“We made some key errors and mental and physical mistakes,” Centralia coach Adam Riffe said. “

It was the first loss of the season for the Tigers, who were coming off a 7-6 victory over Montesano in the season opener and a 14-3 win over Aberdeen Wednesday.

Centralia actually outhit Shelton 7-3, due to some effective pitching by starter Benito Valencia, who struck out four and threw 4 ⅔ innings of one-hit ball. Landon Kaut threw one inning in relief and Landen Jenkins pitched ⅓ of an inning.

But the Tigers’ hits were scattered and not in crucial times with runners on base, Riffe said. Senior catcher Cameron Erickson collected three of the Tigers’ seven hits.

Centralia (2-1) travels to Black Hills on Monday.

Warriors Lose Pitcher’s Duel

Kyle Wilson found out he would be on the mound against Tumwater just 20 minutes before Rochester got on the bus Friday. Turns out, not having time to think about it paid off.

Wilson threw a complete-game one-hitter, but unfortunately walked in an earned run in the fourth inning, and the Warriors were unable to overcome the Thunderbirds in a 3-0 loss on the road. Wilson threw just 88 innings in six innings, including multiple single-digit pitch-count innings.

“Kyle did a phenomenal job,” Rochester coach Brad Quarnstrom said. “It was a good-old-fashioned pitcher’s duel.”

The Warriors outhit Tumwater 3-1 and committed zero errors, which was their downfall in their loss to W.F. West on Wednesday, and were unable to punch in runs when it counted.

“We’ve got to find a way to score runs,” Quarnstrom said.

Rochester (1-2) hosts Tenino in non-league action on Monday.

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