Late Rally Falls Short in Loss to Springfield

YAKIMA, Wash.- 4 runs in the 8th and 2 more in the 9th brought the tying run to the plate, but a lineout ended the Pippins hopes in the 10-8 loss.

Yakima Valley got a solid start from Michael Splaine and took the lead in the 2nd on a pair of RBI hits from Spencer Shipman and Spencer Marenco.

They would take a 2-0 lead into the third but defensive miscues allowed the Drifters to jump back in front.

A leadoff walk and hit-by pitch had runners on the corners and 1 out. Splaine got a groundball up the middle hoping to turn two but an error by the shortstop meant everyone was safe.

Splaine would get the second out only having allowed the 1 run, but a passed ball by the catcher on a second strikeout kept the inning alive and 2 more would score.

The Pippins had a chance in the bottom of the 3rd to tie things up, but a double play left the bases loaded with the tying run on for the second straight game.

Yakima Valley finished with 11 runners left on-base total.

Springfield exploded in the 5th when Michael Splaine was pulled, and the Drifters tallied a 5-spot to make it a 8-2 lead.

They tacked on 2 more in the 6th on a 2-RBI double from Dane Fraser and it was a 10-2 advantage.

The Pippins caught their break in the 8th when a 2-out pop up dropped in front of the centerfielder and Connor Coballes scored 2.

Spencer Marenco added to his fine afternoon with an RBI double and the final frame would start 10-6.

Gaven Mattson tossed 3 scoreless innings including a 1-2-3 9th and the Pippins came to the plate for their last chance.

Sam Olsson’s single got it started and Owen McWilliam followed it up with an RBI double. Marenco scored another run with his RBI single and with 2-outs the tying run came to the plate.

Hank Dunn smoked the first pitch up the middle but a diving catch by Trevor Antonson sealed the ballgame and the Drifters evened the series.

Marenco finished 4-5 with 3 RBI’s and a run, but the Pippins mistakes in the 3rd turned out to be the difference.

The tiebreaking series finale is Sunday night at 6:05 at the Orchard. Tickets still available at

By Zach McKinstry

July 3, 2022