Lewis & Clark Edges Past Bearcats, 3-2

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

PORTLAND, ORE. -- Lewis & Clark College scored one run in the sixth inning and two runs in the eighth to rally from a 2-0 deficit and defeat visiting Willamette University, 3-2, at the Huston Sports Complex on Sunday, March 25. L&C starting pitcher Michael Ball threw a complete-game seven-hitter with five strikeouts.

Ball improved to 2-3 on the season. He helped L&C move to 3-21 overall, 2-10 in the Northwest Conference. Willamette fell to 7-15 overall, 5-7 in the NWC.

The Bearcats tallied one run each in the second and third innings.

In the second, Tosh Semlacher (So., 3B, Gold River, CA/Jesuit HS) doubled down the right field line with one out. Tiras Koon (Fr., 1B, Honolulu, HI/Iolani School) hit a ball to the pitcher, who committed an error trying to throw out Semlacher at third. The wild throw allowed Semlacher to round the bag and score on the play.

With two outs, Dylan Summers (Sr., C, Lake Oswego, OR/Lakeridge HS) singled to right center, advancing Koon to third. A fly ball to right field by Tanner Oates (Fr., 2B, Sparks, NV/Spanish Springs HS) was caught to end the inning.

In the third stanza, Tyson Giza (Jr., CF, Salem, OR/Sprague HS) hit a bunt single with one out. He stole second base, and then scored when Sky Kelley (Jr., RF, Portland, OR/Jesuit HS) singled down the left field line. Kelley was thrown out on the relay throw to the infield. He also was injured on the play and had to leave the game.

Willamette held its 2-0 lead until the bottom of the sixth.

Ball singled to start the inning for L&C. The next two batters were hit by pitches, which loaded the bases. WU starter Peter Hoffman (Fr., RHP, Hayden, ID/Lake City HS) struck out Mike Kinkenon before Cory Davis hit into a run-scoring fielder's choice. Andrew Traver was put out at second, but Ball scored on the play. Hoffman forced another ground ball to get out of the inning.

The Pioneers completed the rally two innings later. Once again Ball opened the inning. He was hit by a pitch. Nick Lavin doubled to extreme right field, sending Ball to third base.

Relief pitcher Henry Harrison (So., LHP, Nevada City, CA/Nevada Union HS) replaced Hoffman. Traver drove in Ball and moved Lavin to third with a single to left center. Kinkenon followed with a sacrifice fly to right field, driving in Lavin with the go-ahead run. After allowing a walk, Harrison used a strikeout and a fielder's choice to shortstop to end the inning.

Summers singled for Willamette with one out in the top of the ninth to put the tying run on base. He was thrown out at second on a stolen base attempt. Ball recorded his fifth strikeout for the final out of the game.

Both teams earned seven hits in the pitchers' duel. Summers of Willamette led all players with a 3-for-4 performance. Traver was 2 for 3 for Lewis & Clark.

Despite suffering the loss, Hoffman (1-3) pitched into the eighth inning and allowed just six hits. He achieved four strikeouts and gave up one walk.

Willamette will play Oregon Institute of Technology in a doubleheader on Tuesday, March 27 at Harry and David Field in Medford, Ore. The first game is slated to begin at 11 a.m. (PDT).

Lewis & Clark College 3
Willamette University 2
Dylan Summers was 3 for 4 at the plate for Willamette.

Dylan Summers was 3 for 4 at the plate for Willamette.