WAPATO - Fans of the Sunnyside High School baseball team will find out what kind of character their Grizzlies are made of this Saturday at Selah.
Sunnyside will be looking to regain some momentum after last night's 7-6 upset defeat at the hands of Wapato.
"We were just shocked last night," said Sunnyside Coach Dave Martinez.
Martinez said he has been preaching all season long that to be successful in a game, a team needs to have three things-pitching, hitting and defense. The only thing out of those three the Grizzlies had going for them last night was hitting.
Sunnyside out hit the Wolfpack 13 to 4, but the Grizzlies couldn't move any baserunners. Sunnyside left eight players aboard last night, and hit into a double play.
Wapato took advantage of seven walks and one hit batter by the Sunnyside pitching staff. The Wolfpack also capitalized on three Grizzly errors, which led to four unearned Wapato runs.
A highlight for the Grizzlies was the phenomenal bat of catcher Michael Johnson. Johnson went 3-for-4 at the plate with three doubles.
The Grizzlies got on the board first, plating a pair of runs in the opening frame. With two outs, Johnson doubled and scored off a single from Nathan Anderson. Anderson then stole second base and scored off a single from Micah Zakahi.
In the second inning, Wapato got its first pair of batters aboard off walks. The Wolfpack then ripped a pair of singles and mixed in a double to score three runs.
Sunnyside responded in the top of the third with a pair of runs. But the Wolfpack battled back in the bottom of the frame, scoring three runs. An error came into play in the third inning that allowed two Wapato runs to score. In the third inning, Sunnyside pitcher Derek Uberuaga walked in a run. The Grizzlies then botched converting a 6-4-3 double play that Wapato scored two runs on from a misplayed Sunnyside throw.
The Grizzlies then plated lone tallies in the fifth and sixth innings. Jessie Ramirez scored in the sixth off a squeeze bunt from Michael Sanchez.
Wapato then plated the winning run in the bottom of the seventh. Zakahi took over in relief from Sanchez with runners on first and second with one out. Zakahi got the first Wapato batter he faced to ground out, but that moved the Wapato runners up a base. The next Wapato batter then ripped a single on a 1-1 pitch to plate the winning run.
Martinez said he isn't quite sure what went wrong. He said the Grizzlies should have dominated that game judged on their performance at the plate. Martinez had five players with multiple hits.
"Last night, we only had hitting going for us," said Martinez. "This game was a character check for us. The kids were disappointed."
Saturday's game will be a true test of what the Grizzlies (6-3, 9-5) are made of with the postseason approaching. Sunnyside will need to bring its "A" game, if the Grizzlies want to get by Selah.
"It is a big game for us on Saturday," said Martinez. "Our boys need to be geared up and ready to go."