BASEBALL/SOFTBALL: Challengers’ clincher put on hold
WINSTON — The top-ranked Cascade Christian baseball team was unable to wrap up the Far West League title Tuesday afternoon, as the Challengers let a late lead slip away before falling 3-2 to Douglas in eight innings.
Colby O’Toole scored the game-winning run with one out in the eighth after a throwing error by Cascade Christian pitcher Cole Stofflet on a bunt by Tyler Waldron allowed O’Toole to come around all the way from first base.
“We didn’t deserve to win and didn’t deserve to be in a 3-2 ballgame in extra innings,” said Cascade head coach Kevin Shafer. “Luckily Douglas gave us an opportunity to stay in the game. It was a remake of what we went through last Tuesday (in a 5-2 loss at St. Mary’s) and have to go back to the drawing board before postseason next week.”
Cascade Christian (20-4, 10-3 FWL) hosts Douglas (11-13, 5-8) in a doubleheader at Lithia & Driveway Fields to close out the regular season at 2 p.m. on Friday. The Challengers hold a one-game lead over South Umpqua for first place in the FWL.
Douglas took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third when O’Toole drew a bases-loaded walk against Cascade Christian starting pitcher Owen Thompson.
Thompson had to work his way around seven walks in his five innings of work. He allowed two hits and one run and struck out 10 batters in his 109-pitch outing.
The Challengers came back to take their lone lead of the game an inning and a half later with not one but two bases-loaded walks of their own. Cole Shields and Ashton Moody drew walks to load the bases, then Liam Benade drew a third straight walk — the second in a row by Douglas relief pitcher Leyton Hoyle — to tie the game. Hoyle then walked his third straight since coming into to relieve starter Kash Richardson, with Jack Knips taking four straight pitches to plate Shields.
Douglas tied the game in the bottom of the sixth on Garrett Schulze’s groundout to shortstop.
O’Toole accounted for two of Douglas’ four hits and the teams combined for nine hits.
Cascade Christian 000 020 00 — 2 5 3
Douglas 001 001 01 — 3 4 0
Thompson, Stofflet (6) and Wallace; Richardson, Hoyle (5), Mickle (8) and Paul. W — Mickle. L — Stofflet.
BROOKINGS-HARBOR 10, ST. MARY’S 3: St. Mary’s committed four errors in the second inning and Brookings-Harbor took advantage with a seven-run frame to take control in the Far West League contest at Lithia & Driveway Fields.
Ean Lawrence came up with a two-run double during the Crusaders’ three-run sixth inning. Beau Aldrich scored Lawrence with a sacrifice fly to cap the frame.
Grant Russo went 2-for-3 for the Crusaders (13-9, 6-7 FWL), whose playoff chances hinge on their doubleheader at Brookings-Harbor on Friday after the Bruins extended their third-place lead to two games with the win.
The top three teams from the FWL automatically advance to the Class 3A state playoffs, with only two at-large bids available statewide.
Brookings-Harbor 070 201 0 — 10 11 1
St. Mary’s 000 003 0 — 3 4 5
DeShon, Burger (5), Valliere (7) and Rosenburg; Aldrich, Johnson (2), Haynes (4) and Lawrence. W — DeShon. L — Aldrich (6-3). 2B — BH: DeShon 2; SM: Lawrence. 3B — BH: Orman.
DOUGLAS 33, CASCADE CHRISTIAN 8, 5 inn.: Cascade Christian generated some early offense but it wasn’t enough against Douglas in the Far West League contest at Lithia & Driveway Fields.
Ashlyn Ehrlich provided a two-run single during the Challengers’ five-run second inning. Bella Williams drove in two runs during a three-run third inning for Cascade Christian (0-23, 0-10 FWL).
Josie Scaglione finished 3-for-3 with two RBIs and a run and Ehrlich went 2-for-2 and scored once for the Challengers.
Keirra Bennett hit for the cycle to lead Douglas (10-12, 3-7) with a single, double, triple and home run.
Douglas (12)04 4(13) — 33 21 3
Cascade Christian 053 00 — 8 9 10
Richardson and Avery; Sweem and Williams. W — Richardson. L — Sweem. 2B — D: Mal. Schultz, Mar. Schultz, Richardson, Bennett. 3B — D: Richardson 2, Bennett, Hester. HR — D: Bennett.