By Jeremy McDonald
SALEM, Ore.– It’s been a while since the McKay baseball team has won two League games let lone two-in-a-row.
The last time this happened, the 2013-2014 season, that season the Scots had two back-to-back league games and won six league games.
Over the next two seasons, McKay went winless and won one game and looked like it was going to be a similar situation as the regular season as they entered Tuesday’s series with Forest Grove.
The Scots held off the Vikings Tuesday to snap a 11-game losing streak and followed that momentum train in Wednesday’s game with great defense entering the bottom of the fifth inning.
Sitting at 0-all, that’s when the pay-off came around for McKay when they went up 2-0 by innings end.
“It was awesome, having everyone in the dugout, the rest of the team making noise, cheering everyone on,” said Ryan Bangs, who got the bats going in the game with batting in the first run of the game. “It was pretty cool, it was a good feeling.
Noah Tavera made it 3-0, scoring off a pass-ball in the sixth as the Scots scored five runs in the sixth to go up seven with three out in front of them to complete something that hasn’t been done in a long, long time.
Tavera scoops up a slow dribbler from his shortstop position and hummed it to first base for the first out. Bangs floated backwards in center field to get out number two.
But, Forest Grove would get on base to keep the game alive. That was followed by a beat out play at first.
Or so they thought.
After some review, it was overturned as McKay would complete the shutout behind a Jasiah Hanson and a strong defensive performance and complete a series that showing the fruition of a Scots team’s hard work and sacrifice up to this point of the season.
“I think we’ve stayed up the whole game, not like run wise but emotion wise,” starts Tavera on the past two games. “We didn’t get down on ourselves at all throughout the game and that probably helped a lot and I think if we stay positive throughout the whole game we’re a pretty solid baseball team.”
“It was a really good feeling, we couldn’t have done it if it wasn’t for everyone on the team working together being good teammates, pushing each other to get better every day at practice,” adds Bangs. “So if it wasn’t for everyone, this wouldn’t be possible.”
Tavera admits that it took this team some time to translate the JBO Success to the Varsity field this year due to the slew of things that this spring has thrown their way
“It’s good, we’re starting to hit the ball a lot more and we’re starting to talk around a lot more,” he said. “(We) joke around, I think it’s more of the fun that’s happening that helps us gain each others trust and the bond between us and I think that’s helping a lot too.
“So it’s been good, we’ve been growing and that’s always good.”
As they wrap up this week with the two wins, they have a few days to rest up as they have a chance to make it three-in-a-row Monday versus Liberty (3-16, 1-12 Metro League) at home at 5pm.
“We just got to come out with the same fire and for the most part we got to stay focused, we can’t let two wins get to our heads because no one should settle for anything and I think if we play as hard as we can and believe in each other, we’ll be just fine,” said Tavera.
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Photos By Jeremy McDonald