After two victories against the Northern region’s Bellevue Bulldogs, the Titans are trying to get their first sweep of the young season. The Titans beat the Bulldogs 3-2 and 6-3 on Friday evening, and are looking to continue that momentum heading into the final stretch of the four-game series at PK Park in Eugene.
It wasn’t until the bottom of the fourth inning when a Titan made it safely on base when freshman shortstop Cade Kissel was walked. Shortly after, catcher Thomas Rudinsky was hit by a pitch as he advanced to first base and Kissel made his way to second. Unfortunately, Jackson Soto couldn’t capitalize and struck out swinging for the Bulldogs’ third out, leaving two runners on base. Soto finished with one hit and one strikeout in the early game Saturday morning.
Lane starting pitcher Dillon Larsen tried to pick off a Bellevue runner at first but his throw sailed over Soto’s head and the Bulldog runner on third stole home, which pushed the score to 1-0.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Tielar Murray recorded Lane’s first official hit on a double to left field. With only one out, head coach Josh Blunt made a substitution at hitter, subbing in second-year catcher Jimmy McDonald for Lane Kashiwamura. McDonald made contact on the ball but it was caught by a Bellevue outfielder. Although McDonald was called out, Murray slid safely into third base. Sophomore Jayden Hanna was unable to drive in Lane’s first run of the game after striking out.
After Larsen walked his second straight batter of the sixth inning, Blunt made the decision to bring in Jack Gordon from the bullpen to try to prevent the Bulldogs from scoring again. With the bases loaded, Gordon struck out one and forced a fly out to end the inning and bring momentum back into the Titans dugout.
In the seventh inning, it was three batters up, three batters down for the Bulldogs. The Titans headed into the bottom of the seventh with sweep on their minds. Soto got the inning started on a good note when he hit the ball into the outfield and made it to second, which really energized the Titan dugout and crowd. Logan Zozaya came after Soto and placed a bunt to left infield as he made it to first and Soto slid into third.
That prompted Bellevue to make a switch at pitcher. That switch did more harm than good as Bulldog Calvin Turchin walked the next two Titan batters and tied the score at 1-1. Titan Hank Forrest smashed a sacrifice fly to outfield which helped Murray on third cross home plate and gives the Titans their third straight victory 2-1 over the Bulldogs.
The afternoon game contrasted that of the low scoring 2-1 morning game. The Titans dominated the Bulldogs 13-1 to earn the sweep in front of the home crowd in Eugene. Lane scored all 13 runs in the first three innings, with nine coming in the third. McDonald, Forrest and Murray all recorded two hits each. Soto drove in a game and series-high three RBI’s. The Titans evened their overall record to five wins and five losses after four straight against Bellevue.
In a two-game series with Centralia on Mar. 25, the Titans won the first game 7-4, but lost the second game 1-3. Lane returned home to PK Park and was unable to win a game against Edmonds Community College who has nine wins in their last 10 games.
The Titans play Mt. Hood at Titan Field on April 3 before heading on the road to play them in a doubleheader on April 6, at Oslund Field in Gresham, OR.