(By Geno Ludwig/Chewelah Independent)
Northstars battle against out-of-state foes in summer baseball action…
The Chewelah Forty-Niners got back on the winning track at Medical Lake last Tuesday with a 13-2 win over the Cardinals. They followed up with a prestigious 9-6 win over Central Valley on Thursday to raise their season record to 4-2 for the summer in AA American Legion Baseball play.
Chewelah 13, ML 2
Chewelah got off to a good start, scoring three runs in the opening inning. John Larson initiated the action by slamming a leadoff triple into left field. He was followed by Lucas Kubik, who singled him home with the first run of the game and then came home on a pitch that got past the Medical Lake catcher. Later in the inning, Jake George scored on a sacrifice fly by Jake Jeanneret, and the Forty-Niners had an early 3-0 lead.
George’s bases loaded double highlighted a two-run second inning for Chewelah. Nick Skok had singled and was waiting on third base, Larson was on second base after being walked and Kubik had singled his way to first base when George hit a pitch deep into centerfield. Skok and Larson both scored, lifting the Niner lead to 5-0.
Chewelah added three more runs in the third inning off singles from Sam Triplett, Jeanneret and Larson. A sacrifice fly by Ryan Marang brought home one run. Larson’s single brought home two more for an 8-0 Niner lead.
The Forty-Niners had the bases loaded with their first three batters in the fifth inning. A walk issued to Andrew Sweat forced in one run, Jeanneret’s single sent another run home, and a bases-loaded walk donated to Triplett sent one more Chewelah runner home. The Niner lead was now 11-2.
Chewelah needed at least one more run to end the game early on the 10-run rule, and they picked up a pair in the top of the sixth inning. A single by Cole Davis scored Larson and Kubik, and the game came to an end when Medical Lake failed to score in the bottom of the inning.
Sweat earned the win on the mound for Chewelah. He threw three scoreless innings, striking out eight and walking zero. Triplett and Larson shared the last three innings in relief.
Davis, Kubik, Jeanneret, Sweat and Larson each swatted two hits in the game. Davis, Jeanneret, George, and Larson all had two runs batted in.
Chewelah 9, CV 6
Jake Jeanneret’s bases-loaded double in the bottom of the sixth inning brought home all three Chewelah baserunners as the Forty-Niners pulled away from a tie game for a 9-6 win over Central Valley here on Thursday.
With two outs and the score knotted at six runs apiece, Cole Davis and Andrew Sweat were walked by the Bears. Justin Rollis then singled into leftfield, filling the bases for Jeanneret, who hammered a three-run double into centerfield to give Chewelah a 9-6 lead. Sweat then sent Central Valley batters back to their dugout in order in the top of the seventh inning to claim the win on the mound.
The Forty-Niners held a 6-4 lead after five innings of play, but Central Valley scored a pair of runs in the top of the sixth inning to even the score at 6-6.
The visiting Bears got on the scoreboard first with a run in the top of the opening inning. Chewelah responded with a run in the bottom of the inning when John Larson singled up the middle and scored on a passed ball.
Chewelah grabbed its first lead in the second inning when Sweat was hit by a pitch and who batted in by Jeanneret’s single into centerfield. The run gave the Niners a 2-1 lead.
Central Valley again tied the score in its half of the third inning, but Chewelah answered immediately with a two-run rally to again take the lead. Singles off the bats of Jake George, Sweat and Rollis provided the power at the plate to fuel the attack that lifted the Niners to a 4-2 advantage on the scoreboard.
When the Bears evened the score at 4-4 in the fourth inning, Chewelah added two more go-ahead runs in the bottom of the inning. Larson singled and was batted in by Davis. Sweat then singled Davis home and the Niners once again held the lead, this time at 6-4.
The Bears were persistent. They came to bat in the top of the sixth inning and tied the score for the third time in the game. However, another rally by Chewelah in the home half of the inning put the Niners on top by a 9-6 margin on Jeanneret’s bases-loaded double for the game-winning runs.
Jeanneret led the Niners in the batter’s box with two hits and three runs batted in. Rollis, Larson and Sweat also swatted two hits for Chewelah.
Sweat notched the pitching win, ascending the mound in the fourth inning. He allowed two runs and five hits. Rollis started the game for Chewelah and threw the first three and two-thirds innings. He likewise yielded two earned runs from five Central Valley hits.
With the two wins last week, the Forty-Niners are now 4-2 in league play. They have a full schedule this week that started with a doubleheader against Deer Park here on Monday. Rogers will visit the Barbour Complex for a 5:30 game on Thursday. On Saturday, The Niners travel to Coeur d’Alene for two games on Saturday before driving to Rogers on Monday.
Northstars face off in Missoula
The Northstars continued to struggle against teams from much larger towns last week as they won only one game out of five at a tournament in Missoula, Montana. Class 4A teams from Walla Walla, Kennewick, Missoula and Gonzaga Prep were the winners against the Northstars, which is a team made up mostly of players from 1A schools. Before heading to Montana, the Northstars notched a 7-6 come-from-behind win over the Spokane Bandits.
Three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning overcame a two-run deficit for the Northstars on Tuesday as they came from behind to edge the Bandits 7-6 at Jackson Field. The Northstars followed with a 3-1 triumph over the Bandits on Wednesday evening to sweep the two-game series.
With two outs, the Northstars loaded the bases on consecutive walks yielded by the Bandits. Pearson Grooms was hit by a pitch, forcing in one run. Tayeb Wilson’s single brought home another to knot the score at 6-all. Broc Houser then came home on a pitch that got past the Bandit catcher to give the Northstars their first lead of the game. The Northstar defense held the Bandits scoreless through their last two at-bats to savor the 7-6 league win.
The Northstars found themselves on the short end of a 5-1 score at the end of one inning of play and had to battle back for the win. They closed the gap to 6-4 at the end of the third inning, but that is as close as they got until the late three-run rally finally gave them the lead.
Zarren Nelson, Zak Kubik, Elan Krausz and Pearson Grooms contributed hits to the victory.
Krausz was the closer for the Northstars, throwing the final scoreless inning to notch the save.
In Wednesday’s game, Zak Kubik singled and scored in the bottom of the sixth inning to give the Northstars an insurance run going into the last at-bat for the Bandits. Kubik singled into centerfield, stole second base, was moved over to third by Pearson Grooms and came home on a third strike that got past the Bandit catcher. His run gave the Northstars a 3-1 lead. Grooms had a single in the second inning.
The two wins raised the Northstars’ season record to 6-7-2. However, a pair of losses on Thursday nullified both wins. Walla Walla won an 8-2 game, followed by a 4-3 loss to Gonzaga Prep.
Walla Walla 8, Northstars 2
Walla Walla got on the scoreboard early with two runs in the opening inning and then added six more in the fifth and sixth innings in the opening round of the tournament at Lewis and Clark State to put the 8-2 win on ice.
The Northstars had the bases loaded with no outs in the third inning on consecutive singles by Tayeb Wilson, Zarren Nelson and Carl Oman. Nevertheless, Nelson was the only one who made it home, narrowing the Walla Walla lead to 2-1.
Nelson had two of the Northstars’ six hits. He batted 2-for-3 with a double in the fifth inning.
Zak Kubik’s single in the sixth inning gave the Northstars their second run when he batted in Elan Krausz from third base. He hit 1-for-3 with one run batted in.
Gonzaga Prep 4, Northstars 3
Against Gonzaga Prep later in the day, the Northstars held a 3-2 lead after six innings but could not hold onto it. The Bullpups tied the game at 3-all in the bottom of the seventh inning and then won it in the bottom of the eighth on a walk-off single.
The Northstars were only one out away from a win in the seventh inning when disaster struck. A bumbled outfield fly allowed the Bears to tie the game, and an extra inning had to be played.
The Northstars had two runners on base to begin the eight inning, but no one brought them home, leaving the door open for Gonzaga Prep. The Bullpups immediately took advantage of a walk given to their first batter by bunting him into scoring position and then bringing him home with the game-winning single.
Dom Coleman’s single batted in the first Northstar run in the opening inning. A single by Elan Krausz brought home the second run in the second at-bat. Pearson Grooms gave the Northstars their 3-2 lead in the fifth inning with an RBI.
Northstars 7, LC Twins 6
Zak Kubik singled in the winning run in the top of the fifth inning and the Northstars held on through the last two frames to beat the Lewis and Clark Twins 7-6 on Friday.
Trailing 6-5 at the end of four innings of play, the Northstars came from behind for the win. Carl Oman scored the tying run with two outs in the fifth inning. Kubik’s hard-hit grounder through the right side of the LC infield then brought home the game’s winning run. Dom Coleman then closed the door on the Twins in their next two at-bats, allowing no runs, to claim the pitching win in relief for the Northstars.
Coleman also contributed from the batter’s box with a two-run single in the third inning that gave the Northstars a 3-1 lead.
Elan Krausz and Zarren Nelson each had a hit. Krausz scored two runs. Nelson had a single and a stolen base in the third inning.
Missoula 6. Northstars 3
Pearson Grooms and Carl Oman had two of the Northstars’ three hits on Saturday when they lost 6-3 to the Missoula Mavericks. Grooms doubled in the first inning to bat in the first Northstar run of the game. Oman hit a double in the fifth inning that brought home the second run for the Northstars and then he scored on a pitch that got past the Missoula catcher.
Southridge 12, Northstars 0
The Northstars were the victims of a one-hit shutout on Sunday after being drubbed 12-0 by Southridge, a Kennewick school. Like their previous game, the Northstars were unable to generate an offense at the plate. Thus, they lost four of their five outings at the tournament in Missoula against teams from much bigger schools.
The Northstars now travel to Salem, Oregon, this weekend for another tournament on June 20-24. Then they play in a tournament in Helena, Montana, on June 28-July 1.