YAKIMA, Wash.- A defensive collapse from the Bend Elks combined with late timely hitting from the Pippins secured a 10-6 win and evened the series at home.
It was the opposite to start the game, as two errors from the Pippins set up the Elks. Wilson Webber picked up his 4th hit of the year to drive home two and Riley Kasper’s RBI single made it 3-0 through 1.
The Elks would steadily add more, with Beau Sylvester’s 17th RBI of the year in the 2nd, a bases loaded walk in the 4th, and an Elijah Jackson RBI Double in the 5th.
Meanwhile, Bend starter Kaden Miller was dealing. He ended his night with 6 innings allowing 1 run on a Liam McCallum sacrifice fly in the 6th and only 4 hits.
When Miller would exit, the Pippins would finally find their stride. A hit-by-pitch, a single, and an error would set up a Connor Coballes RBI single. A strikeout was followed by a walk and a single and then the Bend defense would fall apart.
A routine ground ball would eat up the Elks shortstop, and instead of getting out of the jam with the lead, everyone was safe with still only 1 out. Wally Averett would enter and get a big strikeout, but once again his defense would fail him as another grounder wasn’t fielded cleanly.
This would give a chance to Spencer Marenco, and he would capitalize. Marenco launched a ball deep into the alley and cleared the bases with a 3-RBI triple.
By the time that the 7th inning carnage was done, the Pippins had scored 7 and led 8-6.
Julian Taudin-Chabot shut down Bend in the 8th with 2 K’s and Yakima Valley would add insurance in the bottom half.
After a leadoff walk and 2 straight outs, a wild sequence produced the 5th and 6th Bend errors.
Liam McCallum lined a single into left and the throw to the plate was off-line, allowing McCallum to scoot up to 3rd. Pitcher Wally Averett attempted to gun him down but the throw to 3rd ended up in left setting up a little league home run.
The 2 runs made it 10-6, and Taudin-Chabot came out to close things out. He would strike out 2 more and the dugout would erupt as the Pippins came away with the 4 run win.
A double header tomorrow will determine the fate of the series, with the first pitch of game 1 at 5:05pm.