The third inning of the twilight game of yesterday's doubleheader prevented the 1B Sunnyside Christian High School varsity baseball team from making it a clean sweep against the visiting 1A Connell JV.
After pounding out a 12-2 victory in game one Tuesday afternoon, Sunnyside Christian blanked the visiting Eagles in six of the seven innings in game two. The Knights' downfall, however, came in the top of the third.
That's when the host team committed its two errors in the game. The third inning also was when Connell drew its only two walks of the game, and when the Eagles bunched together three of just the five hits total they could muster off SCHS pitcher Wyatt Hoff.
All that spelled a five-run uprising for Connell in the third frame. The Eagles made the abbreviated rally stand up for a 5-4 win.
"It was kind of disappointing," admitted SCHS Coach Tyler Alseth, noting his club out hit Connell by a 9 to 5 margin in the twin bill finale.
"Our own fault, though," he said, explaining the Knights twice left runners on second and third without getting them home. All told, Alseth said, Sunnyside Christian stranded eight base runners in the second game.
Alseth was quick, however, to praise the performance of his game-two pitcher, Hoff. The team's ace, despite starting the season with a record of 0-3, went the distance in the nightcap. He scattered five hits while fanning eight and walking only the two batters in the third inning.
"Wyatt pitched a great game. His control was much improved in this one," said Alseth. "After that third inning, Wyatt only allowed one base runner the rest of the way."
In banging out nine hits off the two hurlers Connell employed in game two, Plake and Hawk, Sunnyside Christian received multi-hit performances from Hoff (2-for-4), Drew Puterbaugh (2-for-3) and Brant Bosma (2-for-4).
The 12-2 win for Sunnyside Christian in yesterday's opener was fueled by an 11-run outburst in the bottom of the first. Hoff collected four RBI in the frame with a double and a single. Luke Wavrin also doubled during that stretch. Coming through with singles in the first inning were Bosma, Puterbaugh, Brandon Moore, Brandon Broersma, Josh Stein and Alex Brouwer.
All of SCHS's starters had at least one hit in the game.
Brouwer, normally the starting left fielder but who's starting to see spot duty from atop the mound, pitched all five innings in the first game, which was shortened to five innings because of the 10-run mercy rule. He only allowed five hits and issued just three walks.
"No strikeouts for Alex, but he kept throwing strikes and made them put the ball into play," said Alseth.
Sunnyside Christian (3-5) had been scheduled to open league play at home this coming Friday against Lyle, but that doubleheader has since been moved to Saturday, April 27. The Knights will next see action on Monday, April 15, at home against the Zillah JV.