Continuing a break from Northwest Conference games, the Wildcats baseball team traveled to Lewiston, Idaho, to compete against the Lewis-Clark State University Warriors on April 27-29.
The Wildcats started their final game ready to play. Scoring the first run of the game was junior Jordan Harlow off a double hit by junior Tim Wilson. The Warriors tied the game with a run during their turn at bat in the first inning.
Linfield continued to struggle to score despite earning at least one base hit every inning until the sixth inning. The Warriors pulled ahead during the fourth inning when they scored five runs. Sophomore Justin Huckins took over for senior pitcher Robert Vaughn during the fifth inning.
The Wildcats fell further behind when Lewis-Clark State scored its seventh run in the fifth inning. Making a comeback, Linfield scored its second run when senior Ryan Larson scored off an error made by Lewis-Clark State’s third baseman, only the first of eight runs in the seventh inning. Despite a strike out by Harlow, Wilson was able to score off a wild pitch.
Lewis-Clark State switched pitchers only to be scored off of by sophomore Kenny Johnson, after a single to left field hit by junior Kyle Chamberlain. Junior Zach Boskovich was walked, allowing Wilson to score. After a second pitching change on the Warriors side, the Wildcats continued to score off of errors made by Lewis-Clark State. Also to score during the seventh inning was Chamberlain, sophomore Kramer Lindell and Boskovich, rounding the Wildcat’s score up to nine.
Not letting the Warriors score during the seventh inning, the Wildcats moved into the eighth inning keeping their lead. However, the Wildcats were unable to score during the inning.
The Wildcats made it through the eighth inning without letting the Warriors score, keeping the score 9-7. Starting the final inning, both Boskovich and Lindell made it on base and advanced to second base and third base off a sacrifice bunt by senior Jesse Boustead. Larson hit a fly ball to right field that was caught, but allowed Lindell to score, putting the Wildcat’s score at 10-7.
Not allowing the Warriors to score during the remainder of the game, Linfield won 10-7.
Despite having a strong pitching team, the Warriors were only able to hold off the Wildcats during the first two games.
“They have good pitchers ranging from guys with high velocity to guys that hit their spots. So far they have had clutch hitting that has helped them beat us,” junior Zach Manley said in an email.
Starting the series off, the Wildcats couldn’t push through Lewis-Clark State’s defense, losing the first game 4-0.
Drawing out the second game of the series, the Warriors continued to out-score the Wildcats. Linfield had a tough start to the game, as the Warriors managed to score their first run in the first inning. After earning its first run, Lewis-Clark State was held off by Linfield till the seventh inning.
Scoring its first run during the sixth inning, Wilson hit a home run to right field. Tied going into the seventh inning, the Warriors pulled ahead, scoring by three runs. Retaliating against Lewis-Clark State, Linfield scored four runs regaining the lead in the eighth inning.
Earning the first run of the inning was Wilson off a double hit by Johnson. Scoring two more runs, Johnson and Lindell were able to make it to home off a single hit up the middle by Chamberlain.
The final run scored for Linfield was Boskovich, who scored off of a sacrifice bunt hit by junior Michael Hopp. While having a momentary lead, the Wildcats were shut down in Lewis-Clark State’s final inning when it scored four runs, ending the game 8-5.
Despite losing two games during the series, the Wildcats fought hard and won their final game.
A rematch between the two teams is scheduled for May 4. Linfield will also play against Pacific Lutheran University on May 5 and George Fox University on May 6.
Kaylyn Peterson/Sports editor
Kaylyn Peterson can be reached at email@example.com.