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Roseburg ends Mustangs' season

EUGENE

-- The Medford Mustangs' big sticks carried them far this summer.

But even a .400-plus team batting average wasn't enough to bridge the gap for the Mustangs in the American Legion AAA state tournament.

Roseburg pounded Mustang pitching for 18 hits en route to a 14-11 victory Friday night at Swede Johnson Stadium in Eugene, eliminating Medford from the tournament for the second year in a row.

The loss ended the Mustangs' season at 51-13, while Roseburg (35-20) joined Klamath Falls as one of three Area 4 teams remaining as the tourney was pared to four survivors. The Falcons ousted Westview, 7-5.

Unbeaten Eugene and Lakeridge were rained out and will play this morning.

The Mustangs won three of four regular-season games from the Dr. Stewarts. But pitcher John Zumwalt, who got the one Area 4 win against the Mustangs, improved to 6-0 and left with a 9-5 lead after six innings.

Medford led 3-2 going into the fateful fifth inning when the Docs paraded 12 batters to the plate and scored seven runs on five hits, two errors, one walk and a hit batter.

Mustangs left-hander Tim Alvarez had won his nine previous decisions but faced only three batters in the fifth before giving way to reliever Tony Conklin.

D.J. Kooken led off the inning with a double and Brent Foster's throwing error left runners at first and third. Richie Charles, the Southern Oregon Conference baseball player of the year during the high school season, followed with a long fly ball. Medford right fielder Jim Pickrel gloved the ball but couldn't hold it when he banged into the wall. Charles had a double and Roseburg had a 4-3 lead which quickly swelled.

Micah Mills greeted Conklin with a single to put runners on the corners. Kevin Linderman singled to drive in Charles and a sacrifice put runners at second and third for Beau Parazoo, who singled both runners home. Another error and a walk loaded the bases for Kooken, who reached base for the second time in the inning when he was hit by a pitch.

Mike Beers came on to pitch for the Mustangs, striking out Levi Webber and getting Charles to line out.

The Mustangs were never retired in order in a game that was delayed for an hour and 35 minutes after seven innings with Roseburg leading 11-6.

Medford trailed 14-8 heading to the bottom of the ninth. The Mustangs got runners on base, but the bats that bailed the team out time and again during the regular season failed to come through.

Jarred Pagnini doubled home one run in the ninth and two more runs scored on ground outs.

Charlie Jensen was 3-for-5 for the Mustangs, while Nate Mayben, Foster, Pagnini and Jason Brownell had two hits each.

Roseburg

..........200 070 230 -- 14 18 4 Medford

............120 020 123 -- 11 14 7

Zumwalt, Anderson (7), Riley (9) and Charles; Alvarez, Conklin (5), Beers (5) G. Foster (8) and Brownell. W -- Zumwalt. L -- Alvarez (9-1). 2B -- R: Kooken, Charles, Parazoo. M: B. Foster 2, Jensen, Pagnini 2. 3B -- M: Halpin.