Red-hot Comets win 24th straight game
CLACKAMAS — The Central Point American Legion A team continued its incredible roll in the 13th Annual Diamond Classic Clackamas Wood Bat Tournament by winning its 24th straight game Friday.
Yet, as they go for the quarter-century mark in consecutive wins today, perhaps the Comets' toughest test so far may come in that game — a quarterfinal against the Oregon City Black Sox, a squad comprised of players from Class 6A state champion Oregon City.
The Comets finished pool play in the 12-team event with a 9-1 triumph over Redmond on Friday at Clackamas High School.
"It's been a good stretch," said Comets coach Jay Campbell. "You have to have a complete team to do that. Every kid who's come in has taken advantage of their playing time and we haven't missed a beat with anyone."
If Central Point (27-4) beats the Black Sox in today's 3 p.m. game, the Comets will advance to Sunday's semifinals. If they lose, they will play a second game against the loser of the other quarterfinal.
"It's definitely gonna be a challenge," Campbell said of today's matchup. "They're a solid club and they're talented. It's gonna be a good matchup. The kids are excited and that's why I brought them up here, to see really good talent. It should be fun."
Against Redmond, the Comets quickly grabbed a 6-0 lead after notching four runs in the second inning.
Evan Erskine's run-scoring double got the frame started for the Comets and Ty Fox followed with an RBI single. Tanner Ryerson added an RBI groundout and Fox later scored on a passed ball.
Fox earned the win, pitching three shutout innings where he allowed three hits and struck out two.
Pitcher Zach Lathrop was solid as well, going the final four innings to allow just one run in the bottom of the fifth. He yielded five hits and fanned one. Neither pitcher surrendered a walk.
Fox also finished 2-for-3 with two runs and an RBI, while Erskine scored a run, drove in another and, along with Taylor Tibbets, went 2-for-4.
Central Point 240 011 1 — 9 8 1
Redmond 000 010 0 — 1 8 1
Fox, Lathrop (4) and Aplin, Caballero (6); Coe, Thomas (3) and Chaz. W — Fox (5-0). L — Coe. 2B — CP: Erskine; R: Rainville. 3B — CP: Aplin.
GRANTS PASS NUGGETS 12-12, MEDFORD MUSTANGS 2-6 — At Grants Pass, the Medford Mustangs committed 10 errors in the doubleheader at Agnew-Lytle Field and dropped their fourth straight American Legion AAA Area 4 game.
In the opener, all 12 Grants Pass runs were unearned.
Corey Wynant paced the Nuggets with three hits and three RBIs. Matt Cole added two hits and three RBIs and Jake Herklotz had a pair of hits for Grants Pass (32-3, 7-1 Area 4).
Hayden Evans went 2-for-2 for the Mustangs (18-15, 2-6).
Medford's highlight in Game 2 was two perfect innings of relief with three strikeouts by Isaiah Luzny. Luzny has pitched six consecutive hitless innings.
Andrew Tracy had the big game for Grants Pass with three doubles and four RBIs. Anthony Cantiello and Marco Garmendia collected two hits each.
For Medford, Ethan Schlecht, who homered to open the seventh, had two hits and scored twice.
Medford Mustangs 000 02 — 2 6 4
Grants Pass Nuggets 603 3x — 12 11 0
Flynn, Hoff (3) and Westfall; Gulbransen and Wynant. W — Gulbransen. L — Flynn (3-2). 2B — M: Walker; GP: Wynant, Cole.
Medford Mustangs 500 000 1 — 6 4 6
Grants Pass Nuggets 610 500 x — 12 11 1
Morrison, Doolittle (4), Fredricksen (4), Luzny (5) and Westfall, Westhelle-Grant (4); Bennett, Herklotz (1) and Garmendia. W — Herklotz. L — Morrison (2-4). 2B — M: Walker; GP: Tracy 3, Cantiello, Cowell. HR — M: Schlecht (2).
ASHLAND 14-18, KLAMATH FALLS 4-1 — At Ashland, the Ashland Pilots tallied 26 hits, eight for extra bases, in an American Legion A Area 4 doubleheader sweep of the Klamath Hawks at North Mountain Park.
Tommy Hulick went 3-for-4 with a triple and two RBIs in Ashland's Game 1 victory, and Carter Glick was 3-for-3 with a double and three RBIs in Ashland's Game 2 win, as the Pilots snapped a four-game losing streak in resounding fashion.
The first game was called after the Pilots scored seven runs in the fifth inning to put the 10-run mercy rule into effect, and the second game was called after three innings when the Hawks ran out of pitchers.
In the opener, Ashland (16-9) and starting pitcher Jack Carroll fell behind 3-0 heading into the bottom of the second before scoring one in the top of the second and six in the third to break the game open. Cory Milgram and Ian Alpenia led off the third with back-to-back singles, while Eric Carlson and Sky Lewis added RBI singles.
Game 2 was even more lopsided, as Ashland scored five runs in the first inning and seven in the second to quickly pull away. Glick's RBI double gave Ashland a 6-1 lead in the second, and Carlson's two-run double to center gave the Pilots a 17-1 lead in the third.
10-11-YEAR-OLD STATE TOURNAMENT — At Hermiston, Jacob Melton had two hits, including a home run, and three RBIs but the Medford Nationals dropped their opener to Sprague, 6-5, in the nine-team, double-elimination tournament.
Cole Boster had a pair of doubles and Robby Carle scored two runs for the Nationals.