By The Chronicle
Tuesday, May 26, 2009 11:04 AM PDT
MOSSYROCK — Napavine just keeps on winning.
The Tigers advanced to the State 2B Baseball Tournament Semifinals with a pair of wins here Saturday, beating Concrete 4-2 and then dismantling Rainier Christian 16-6 to set up a Friday night date with DeSales in Yakima, with a spot in the state title game on the line.
Napavine 4, Concrete 2
The Tigers hit when it counted to pick up a first-round 4-2 win over Concrete.
Connor Craft threw the first six innings, fighting through three Tiger errors and striking out six, to pick up the win, and Mathew Waltenburg knocked a two-run homer in the third inning to help Napavine advance.
Concrete took a brief 1-0 lead heading into the bottom of the third inning, but Wade Hamre drove in a run with a sacrifice fly and Waltenburg followed it up with his homer to put the Tigers up 3-1.
“That inning gave the momentum back to our side,” Tiger coach Bryan Bullock said.
Napavine added an insurance run in the fifth inning and survived a scare in the seventh, when it notched a second run and had the tying mark on first base. Joe Scamman came in in relief, however, and struck out two batters to end the game.
“We only had seven hits, but after that first inning, we made their pitcher work,” Bullock said.
Napavine 16, Rainier Christian 6
Napavine plated a jaw-dropping 10 runs in the second inning to end Rainier Christian’s season here in the second round of the State 2B Baseball Tournament.
The Mustangs took an early 3-0 lead, plating runs off of a triple, a Tiger error and a walk.
“Our guys responded in the second,” Bullock said. After Marty Cozart put down the Mustang hitters in order the Tigers went off in their turn at bat, highlighted by a two-run double from Mason Keller and a three-run double from Devin Carroll.
The Tigers got five hits, drew four walks and took advantage of four errors in the scoring splurge.
Rainier Christian added a run to make it 10-4, but Napavine answered with a four-run, two-out rally in the fourth inning — including a two-RBI single from Keller and a two-RBI double from Waltenburg — to shoot down any Mustang momentum.
Cozart struck out six in the complete-game effort.
“It was a pretty tough strike zone, and he threw real well,” Bullock said. “That was probably his best outing all season long.”
Keller and Justin Smith both had two hits for Napavine.
“When we went in today our goal was to make the final four,” Bullock said. “I definitely felt, from our seniors, that winning the first game was not enough. They were not going to stop with just one win today.”
Napavine will play DeSales, the defending state champions and 8-4 winners over St. George’s, on Friday at 7 p.m. at Yakima’s Parker Stadium.