LCSC Box Score
LEWISTON, Idaho – Jake Wylie (Jr., Eagle, Idaho) hit a grand slam and drove in five runs in Game 1 as Linfield cruised to a 7-3 victory over Pacific Lutheran, but the ‘Cats ran out of luck in a 20-8 night game defeat against Lewis-Clark State and ended up splitting a nonconference doubleheader Saturday as part of the Inland Cellular Tournament at Harris Field.
On the day, Wylie was 4-for-7 with five runs batted in, three runs scored and three extra base hits for the ‘Cats. Clayton Truex (Jr., Kirkland, Wash.) and Nick Fisher (Jr., Lake Oswego, Ore.) each had three hits for Linfield, which moved to 33-6 on the season with the split.
Game 1: Linfield 7, Pacific Lutheran 3
Wylie hit a grand slam in the third and added an RBI double in the seventh to provide all the offense Chris Haddeland (Soph., McMinnville, Ore.) needed to earn his 11th victory of the season.
Linfield’s sophomore ace threw seven shutout innings, allowing just one hit with two walks and six strikeouts, and Garett Speyer (Jr., Vancouver, Wash.) threw the eighth and ninth for the Wildcats.
PLU starter Trevor Lubking took the loss as he allowed seven runs – three earned – on six hits with three walks and five strikeouts. Collin Nilson’s three-run home run in the ninth was all the offense the Lutes got, and PLU fell to 22-16 on the season with the loss.
Haddeland retired the first seven hitters he faced until Markus McClurkin drew a one-out walk in the top of the third. A base hit and sacrifice bunt put two Lutes in scoring position, but Haddeland struck out Tanner Bogart to leave the runners on base.
Things got ugly for PLU in the third, as Kenny Johnson (Jr., Federal Way, Wash.) and Eric Lawson (Fr., Mill Creek, Wash.) both reached on errors and Tim Wilson (Jr., Redmond, Wash.) walked to load the bases. Johnson was thrown out at home on an ensuing groundout, but the bases remained loaded as Wylie stepped to the plate. The NWC RBI leader sent a 1-1 pitch over the fence in dead-center field, clearing the bases and giving Linfield a healthy 4-0 lead.
Haddeland cruised off the momentum, again retiring seven consecutive Lutes into the sixth inning.
Wylie led off the bottom of the sixth with a walk and after Kramer Lindell (Jr., West Linn, Ore.) singled, Fisher brought Wylie home from third with a sacrifice fly. Truex made the score 6-0 with an RBI double, but Lubking got out of the inning without further damage.
After Haddeland retired the side in order in the top of the seventh, Wilson singled with one out in the bottom of the inning and stole second and third. Wylie came to bat with two outs and laced a double down the left field line to plate Wilson and up the spread to 7-0.
Speyer shut down PLU in the eighth, but Drew Oord and Cutis Wildung each singled to lead off the ninth. After a popup, Nilson delivered a three-run blast to left that turned a sizeable advantage into a more modest four-run lead for Linfield. Speyer worked around a two-out base hit to record the final out of the game on a fly out to Lindell, and the Wildcats sealed the victory.
Game 2: Lewis-Clark State 20, Linfield 8
Kyle Blackwell went 4-for-4 with two doubles and Bobby Joe Tannehill, Cody Lavalli and Kyle Knigge each homered as NAIA powerhouse Lewis-Clark State handed Linfield a lopsided loss in Game 2.
Warriors pitcher Anthony Armanino lasted six innings, allowing four runs on seven hits with one walk and six strikeouts. Sal Arena and Kasey Knigge combined to throw the final three innings for 10th-ranked LC State, which improved to 39-13 on the season with the victory.
Aaron Thomassen (Soph., Seattle, Wash.) lasted just three innings for the Wildcats, his shortest appearance of the season. The sophomore was touched up for 10 runs on nine hits with three walks and no strikeouts. Joseph Stevick (Soph., Bremerton, Wash.), Garrett Miller (Soph., Corvallis, Ore.) and Johnson pieced together the final five frames for the Wildcats.
Wilson led off the game with a walk, but Armanino got out of the inning with a foul out, a pickoff and a groundout to prevent the runner from scoring.
The Warriors got to work in the bottom of the first, as Jake Shirley led off with a base hit into center field. LC State’s left fielder advanced to third on a wild pitch and throwing error, and came around to score on a groundout by Tannehill. Brady Steiger got a rally started with a one-out single, and Blackwell sent an RBI double into the gap in right center to make the score 2-0.
After Fisher tripled with one out in the second, Truex lofted a fly ball into center that was deep enough to bring home Linfield’s first run of the game.
The ‘Cats put their first two runners on in the third, but Armanino buckled down to retire the next three hitters to keep the score at 2-1.
The Warriors distanced themselves in the third as Shirley led off with a triple and scored on a wild pitch. A walk and two more base hits loaded the bases before Blackwell brought home another run with a walk. A two-run double from Eric Peterson, a sacrifice fly from Jacob Cano and an RBI groundout by Zach Holley pushed the Warriors’ lead to 8-1 before Thomassen finally got out of the inning with a fly out.
Linfield responded in the fourth. Fisher doubled to set the stage for Truex’ fourth home run of the season, a two-run shot to left center that cut into the deficit and made the score 8-3.
A double and a walk to start the bottom of the fourth ended Thomassen’s day as Stevick took over in relief. LC State pulled away with a seven-run frame, highlighted by a two-run double from Blackwell and a two-run home run from Kyle Knigge. Stevick got Steiger to ground into an inning-ending double play, but the damage had been done as the score sat at 15-3.
The ‘Cats manufactured a run in the fifth as Wilson stole a pair of bases and scored on a throwing error, but Linfield made no serious threat at cutting into the double-digit deficit.
The Warriors didn’t let up in the sixth as Blackwell singled and Peterson drew a walk to put two runners on base. Kyle Knigge delivered a two-out two-run single into center that made the score 17-4.
LC State tacked on two more runs in the sixth on Lavalli’s team-high ninth homer of the season, a two-run blast that plated Kevin Knapp.
Both teams were silenced in the seventh before Linfield made one final push in the eighth. Wylie led off with a double and pinch hitter Jackson Ruckert (Soph., Albany, Ore.) and Fisher each singled to load the bases. Kameron Bates (Soph., Springfield, Ore.) pinch hit for Truex and plated a run with a groundout and Nate McClellan (Jr., Shoreline, Wash.) shot a base hit to center for another run. The ‘Cats picked up two more runs on an RBI-groundout by Jordan Harlow (Sr., Baker City, Ore.) and an RBI-single from Kyle Chamberlain (Sr., Portland, Ore.), but those would be the last runs Linfield scored as the Warriors held on for the decisive victory.
‘CAT SCRATCH: With four stolen bases on the day, Wilson set the career record for stolen bases with 68, passing the previous mark of 67 set by Tyson Smith in 2010…after picking up the win in Game 1, Haddeland is one victory away from tying the single-season record of 12, currently held by Ryan Larson (’12)…Eric Lawson (Fr., Mill Creek, Wash.) made his second varsity start in Game 1…Johnson made his debut on the mound in Game 2 and became the first Wildcat position player to pitch in 2013…Linfield snapped an 11-game winning streak with the loss to Lewis-Clark State…the ‘Cats beat the Warriors once in three games in 2012, a 10-7 victory in Lewiston on April 29.
NEXT UP: Linfield wraps up its regular season schedule Sunday with a single nonconference game against NWC opponent Whitworth. First pitch is set for 11 a.m. in Lewiston.
Sets career record with 68 stolen bases
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