PROSSER - A complete game pitching performance by Wyatt Hoff, who helped his own cause by ripping a single and double in four plate appearances, sparked the Sunnyside Christian varsity to a 5-3 victory over the Prosser JV baseball team yesterday afternoon.
The Mustangs rallied in the nightcap, however, getting a one-hit hurling performance from Cooper Blair enroute to gaining a split of the twin bill via a 12-1 win.
Monday's non-league doubleheader was the final tune-up for Sunnyside Christian (6-9) before hosting Lyle-Wishram next Monday. That contest will serve as a play-in game to the 1B District tournament.
In besting Prosser in game one yesterday, Hoff (3-2) scattered six hits in going the distance atop the mound. He allowed three walks, but more than made up for the free passes by setting nine Mustangs down on strikes.
Sunnyside Christian Coach Tyler Alseth said his ace continued using the change-up that has been very effective for him this spring, but also began working in a curveball yesterday that Hoff is trying to develop.
"And, it seems like Wyatt is getting stronger when he gets deeper into the game," said Alseth, noting that Hoff never showed signs of tiring yesterday.
The Knights broke open a scoreless tie in Monday's opener with a four-run uprising in the top of the third. Ricky Driesen started the rally by getting aboard on an error, one of two Prosser committed in the game. Following a walk to Alex Brouwer, Hoff stroked a run-scoring double to rid the scoreboard of goose eggs. Drew Puterbaugh, the team's leading batter this season, followed with another RBI double. Levi Puterbaugh pushed in the two other runs by lacing a single.
Prosser countered with a single tally in the bottom of the fourth and drew to within a single run by plating two more scores in the home half of the fifth.
Hoff stiffened, though, holding the Mustangs scoreless in the final two innings.
For good measure, Sunnyside Christian tacked on an insurance score in the top of the seventh on an RBI single off the bat of Brant Bosma.
Besides Hoff going 2-for-4 in the victory, teammate Brandon Moore also had a pair of hits. All told, the Knights worked nine hits off starting pitcher Andres Ramiro and relief hurler A.J. Goulet.
Game two was a different story altogether, as Prosser forged an early 1-0 first-inning lead, then exploded for four runs in the second and another seven tallies in the third frame.
The starting pitcher for Sunnyside Christian, Moore (2-4), absorbed the loss. He got pulled midway through the third in favor of his brother, Matt Moore, who finished up the pitching chores.
The lone hit the Knights could muster off Blair, who kept Sunnyside Christian's hitters off-balance with a knuckleball/sinker, was a first-inning single by Bosma.
Sunnyside Christian scored its only run in game two in the top of the third. The score was generated by Brouwer, who walked, stole second and third, and dashed home on a passed ball.
Offensively for Prosser in the nightcap, Goulet had the hot bat, going 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles.