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Phoenix splits in road openers

SUTHERLIN ­— As far as season openers go, the Phoenix baseball team took the good with the bad Saturday and came away feeling optimistic despite a split in a nonconference twin bill against Sutherlin and Douglas.

A mixup in game times left the Pirates only 30 minutes to prepare for their first game against Sutherlin but Phoenix was dialed in from the start to secure a 4-2 triumph. In Game 2, some of those same fundamentals were missing but the Pirates still belted out 15 hits and nearly pulled off a thrilling comeback in a 12-11 setback against Douglas.

“We played really well for I don’t think being very prepared for the first game,” said Phoenix head coach Bill Hutchinson. “In the second game we liked what we saw. We were down 8-1 and could’ve folded up shop but scored 10 runs in the last four innings to tie it up. It was an unbelievable rally, we played hard the whole time and didn’t give up.”

Against Sutherlin, Mason Stella plated Brennen Watts on a fielder’s choice in the sixth inning to break a 2-all tie and later came around to score on a double steal with Kevin Botermans. Stella also earned the pitching win in relief of Dylan Knudson with four strikeouts, one walk and two hits allowed in two scoreless innings. Knudson allowed two hits with five strikeouts and three walks.

Twelve walks allowed and six errors proved costly against Douglas but Phoenix (1-1) was steady at the plate as Stella went 4-for-4 with three RBIs, Knudson 3-for-5 with two RBIs and Brennen Watts 3-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs. Also for the Pirates, Liam Sierna was 2-for-4 with two runs and one RBI, Nik Goff 2-for-4 with two runs and Braden Watts 2-for-4 with one run.

Phoenix 110 002 0 — 4 6 2

Sutherlin 001 010 x — 2 4 1

Knudson, Stella (6) and Merriman; Westbrooks, Meisner (6) and Peterman. W — Stella (1-0). L — Meisner. 2B — P: Knudson; S: Meisner.

Phoenix 001 402 4 — 11 15 6

Douglas 332 111 1 — 12 5 2

Martinez, Sierna (1), Beer (4), Goff (6), Stella (7) and Merriman, Sierna (4); N. Burke, West (6), Waldron (7) and G. Burke. W — Waldron. L — Goff (0-1). 2B — P: Knudson 2. 3B — D: Baker.

EVERGREEN 1, GRANTS PASS 0: At Grants Pass, Evergreen scored the game’s only run on a double by David Montei in the top of the seventh inning and all-state left-hander Tommy Snyder tossed a four-hitter with 15 strikeouts to edge Grants Pass and earn a series split. Grants Pass won 4-3 on Friday.

Cade King doubled to give the Cavemen (2-1) a scoring opportunity but the visiting Plainsmen of Washington kept GP at bay.

Matt Knight struck out three in five innings of scoreless work and Chase Coyle came on in relief to fan one in his two innings, with the pitching duo combining for only three walks.

Evergreen 000 000 1 — 1 6 0

Grants Pass 000 000 0 — 0 4 1

Snyder and Tomas; Knight, Coyle (6) and Dinkel. W — Snyder. L — Coyle (0-1). 2B — E: Birchem, Montei; GP: King.

BROOKINGS-HARBOR 12, ST. MARY’S 2: John Beattie supplied the lone hit for St. Mary’s with a sixth-inning single and later came around to score with teammate Brady Eiler to pace the Crusaders in the nonleague loss at St. Mary’s High.

St. Mary’s dropped to 0-1 in the debut season for head coach Darien Hardaway.

Brookings-Harbor (2-0) got four hitless innings of pitching from starter Roman Worthey to help set the tone.

Brookings 200 072 1 — 12 8 0

St. Mary’s 000 002 x — 2 1 3

Worthey, Zamora (5) and McCollum; Aldrich, Hadley (3), Eiler (4), Covington (7) and Hadley, Aldrich (3). W — Worthey. L — Aldrich (0-1). 2B — B: Testa, Worthey, Kleespies, Zamora.