Knights Deal Pippins First Sweep of Season
The Yakima Valley Pippins were swept for the first time this season as the Corvallis Knights broke a 4-4 tie in the bottom of the eighth inning to win the series finale Thursday.
The Pippins will head to Port Angeles Friday hoping for some better results in the second half of their six-game road trip.
The Pippins started the scoring for the third-straight game when Blake Dickman singled to score Spencer Marenco from second base. The throw went to the plate, allowing Dickman to move to second after Chaz Myers went first-to-third on the hit.
With two outs, Willie Lajoie hit a bouncer near the mound that Corvallis starter Grant Taylor mishandled, allowing Myers to score. Dickman tried to capitalize by scoring from second, but instead was thrown out at the plate to end the inning.
Peyton Stumbo started on the mound for the Pippins and delivered two scoreless innings without allowing a hit to start the game. In the third inning, the Knights recorded their first three hits to score a run and cut the Pippins’ lead in half.
Stumbo would strike out two in a perfect fourth inning, but the Knights would tie the game and subsequently take the lead in the fifth inning.
Jake Hoskins led off the bottom of the fifth with a double and was driven in to tie the game by Travis Bazzana. Briley Knight, making his first appearance with the Knights since June 9, launched a two-run home run to right field to give Corvallis a 4-2 lead.
The Pippins answered in the next half-inning after Blake Dickman walked on four pitches to start the sixth. Willie Lajoie would knock a double off the left field wall to put runners on second and third with one out, and end Taylor’s day.
Sidearm pitcher Chase Walter took over, allowing a base hit to right that scored Dickman and left runners on the corners with one out. Walter got a strikeout, then Mason Marenco intentionally got himself into a rundown between first and second base, allowing Lajoie to score from third and tie the game.
Walter would strike out five more batters over two scoreless innings after that, and Julian Taudin-Chabot delivered a pair of scoreless innings in relief for the Pippins.
In the bottom of the eighth inning, Taudin-Chabot walked and was moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt to start the inning. From there, the Pippins turned to Owen Wild to try to escape the inning.
Wild got Nate Nankil to hit a soft line drive to right field, but it was too soft, dropping in for a base hit that scored Knight from second. After a groundout, a walk and a strikeout forced the Knights to settle for a one-run lead.
Sean Wiese entered in the ninth for the Knights in a save situation and retired the side in order, striking out one, to complete the sweep.
The Pippins will kick off their series in Port Angeles Friday, with first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m.