Comets win, Mavericks fall in state openers
NORTH BEND — A long day on the road and windy conditions didn't deter the Central Point Comets as they opened the American Legion A state tournament Wednesday at Clyde Allen Field.
Central Point erupted for three runs in the third inning and cruised to a 4-1 victory over the Portland Eastside Baseball Club for a positive start to postseason play.
"You never know how you're going to react," Comets head coach Jay Campbell said of the opener, "but we were happy to come out with the win the first day out and I think hopefully we'll get better and better as it goes on."
Central Point (44-6) advances to face Roseburg Premier Insurance, a 4-1 winner over North Medford, in another championship bracket matchup at 3 p.m. today. Other opening-day winners in the eight-team bracket were the Grants Pass Diggers, who won an extra-inning affair with Roseburg Pepsi, and La Grande Legacy, who beat tourney host North Coos.
Taylor Pardee struck out eight and allowed no walks in a five-hit victory over Portland Eastside, which scored its lone run in the seventh inning.
Tyler Aplin went 2-for-2 with two runs and one RBI and Evan Erskine was 2-for-2 with one run and two RBIs to pace the Area 4 South champion Comets.
In the third inning, Paul Turner hit a leadoff single, was sacrificed to second and scored on a single by Aplin. After a stolen base, Aplin scored on a single by Erskine. Another stolen base and a runner-advancing groundout put Erskine in position to score on a wild pitch for a 3-0 lead.
In the fifth, Central Point added an insurance run when Aplin drew a walk, moved to second on a passed ball and scored on a single by Erskine.
Portland Eastside 000 000 1 — 1 5 2
Central Point 003 010 x — 4 6 1
Heiberg and Fetters; Pardee and Aplin. W — Pardee (6-1). L — Heiberg. 2B — P: Powers; CP: Tibbets.
ROSEBURG PREMIER 4, NORTH MEDFORD 1 — At Coos Bay, North Medford managed only two hits against Roseburg pitcher Jake Forrester to drop an opening-round game at the American Legion A state tournament.
Forrester, who was an all-state pitcher as a sophomore this past spring for Umpqua Valley Christian, struck out 11 to keep the Mavericks (44-17) at bay.
Taylor Raff smacked a leadoff double in the first inning, moved to third on a sacrifice and scored on a fielder's choice by Micah Brown for North Medford's lone run. Troy Fowler had a hit-and-run single in the fifth but the Mavericks couldn't advance any further.
Josh Berman took the loss, with four straight walks leading to a first-inning run by Roseburg and three straight hits in the second pushing Premier Insurance's lead up to 3-1.
The Mavericks face an elimination game at 9 a.m. today against Portland Eastside.
Roseburg Premier 120 001 0 — 4 8 0
North Medford 100 000 0 — 1 2 1
Forrester and Rudy; Berman, Brown (5) and Zavala. W — Forrester. L — Berman (5-3). 2B — R: Rose, Gordon; M: Raff
PORTLAND CITY/BOB ALLARD MEMORIAL — At Portland, Dylan Wu of Medford won his first junior event Tuesday after recently moving up a division following his 16th birthday, carding a pair of 3-under-par 69s in his two rounds at the Rose City Golf Course.
Wu's 138 total put him four shots ahead of runner-up Conner Kumpula of Albany, while Ashland's Matt Hedges finished 14th overall with a 6-over 152. Eagle Point's Glenn Linder tied for 33rd in the junior division (160).
Medford's Reese Fisher finished second in the intermediate boys division, nine shots back of Vancouver's Spencer Tibbits, with a 151.
In the boys division, Joshua Wu finished three shots off the pace to place fourth with a 152.
JUNIOR BOYS — 1, Dylan Wu, Medford, 69-69—138; 14, Matt Hedges, Ashland, 74-78—152; T33, Glenn Linder, Eagle Point, 81-79—160.
BOYS — 4, Joshua Wu, Medford, 72-80—152; 23, Jeremy Wu, Medford, 83-79—162; T26, Jake Quast, Ashland, 83-82—165.
INTERMEDIATE BOYS — 2, Reese Fisher, Medford, 74-77—151.
PEE WEE BOYS — 8, Riggs Loftin, Medford, 47-49—96.