The Sweets lost their second straight game to Corvallis, falling to the Knights 6-3 at Goss Stadium on Saturday night.
Knights RF Jordan Qsar (Pepperdine), the league’s pre-eminent power hitter, blasted two home runs, increasing his WCL-best homer total to nine.
Corvallis began the scoring with two runs in the second off of Sweets starter RHP Matt Amrhein (Cal Baptist). Qsar drilled the first pitch of the inning over the fence and off the large scoreboard in right field. Then, the Knights grabbed an unearned run on a walk, an error, and a double steal.
Corvallis doubled its lead with two more runs in the fifth. Amrhein got two quick outs before surrendering a double to DH Dillan Shrum (Nevada) in front of another Qsar moon shot.
Meanwhile, Knights starter, LHP Jordan Horak (Portland) blanked the Sweets over five scoreless innings.
But in the top of the seventh, the Sweets roared back against the Corvallis bullpen. Facing RHP Cameron Richman (Portland), a Walla Walla native and a graduate of DeSales High School, the Sweets loaded the bases on two hit by pitches and a walk.
Then, with an 0-2 count, LF J.J. Hancock dunked a bloop single to left. Scoring were the hit batters, 2B Vinny Capra (Richmond) and SS Jacob Blas (Arizona).
A succession of three wild pitches then brought CF Danny Sinatro (Washington State) around to score as well.
The Sweets had trimmed Corvallis’s lead to 4-3 by the seventh inning stretch, but watched the ballgame slip back out of reach in the bottom half of the seventh.
A single by C Zak Taylor (Oregon State), and a bases-loaded walk by LF Elliot Willy (Oregon State) brought two runs in and put the Knights ahead 6-3.
That margin held up as the game’s final score. In the ninth, LHP Chase Kaplan (Kansas) set the Sweets down in order, clinching a series win for Corvallis.
The Sweets fall to 1-2 in the second half (16-14 overall). Corvallis improves to 5-0 (22-10 overall).
Horak (4-1) wins the ballgame. Amrhein (0-2) takes the loss. Kaplan records his fifth save.
The Sweets will try and salvage the series tomorrow afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 5:05 p.m. from Goss Stadium.
LHP Dylan Riddle (UC-Irvine) will toss for the Sweets, who are trying to avoid their second series sweep of the year. He will be opposed by LHP Hazahel Quijada (UC-Riverside).
by Ben Farber
Audio Highlights -- Cameron Deere defensive play in eighth inning