By Jeremy McDonald
CORVALLIS, Ore.– When the series started Tuesday, it seemed like the series between the Withnell Dodgers and the Corvallis Gerding Builders Marketmen that would feature a bunch of hits and runs.
But, after that 12-9 Corvallis win to start the three-game series, both teams bats cooled down a bit in the 4-2 defensive game Wednesday before the Marketmen revve’d it up again Thursday in the 7-0 win that handed Withnell not just a three-game losing streak, but their first shutout since July 29, 2016 against the Medford Mustangs in the playoffs.
For the Dodgers, it was out-of-character of them on how they performed these last few games as they look back to see how they can improve starting this weekend.
“We weren’t the ‘always better team wins the series, but the team that shows up and plays all nine-innings’,” said Noah Boatwright on the series. “I think we had the lead for, the first two-games, we had the lead all the way up until the seventh-inning, in both games and then we lost it in the last three.
“So if there’s one thing we learn is that we have to play from inning-one, to inning-nine or we’re going to get beat because we just can’t drop-in and expect to win. We still have to work.”
In Game one, the Dodgers held a 6-0 lead before surrendering 12 of the game’s next 15 runs in the 12-9 series opener in extra innings in Salem. In Game two, the Withnell defense held the strong bats of Corvallis to no-runs entering the seventh-inning before the Marketmen rally the troops for the 4-2 win Wednesday in Corvallis.
And with the Star-Spangle Tournament this weekend in Corvallis with the Dodgers starting off with the Perth Colts of Australia, it gives a little mental-breather as a break in between league games to refocus and regain confidence at the plate before their Keizer Crusher series Monday and Tuesday.
“I think we’re going to find some hitters this weekend by switching up the line-up,” said Boatwright. “I think everyone’s going to get a shot, this weekend and whoever hit’s the ball, get’s to play.”
“These are like, not ‘tune-up’ games, but games to get us back up and going for Monday and Tuesday, we got league,” adds Cameron Jolly who pitched six-innings in the loss Thursday. “Coach said in our circle, even if we don’t win, changing our approach for the better for people at-bat will be a plus for the whole tournament.”
First-pitch at Corvallis High School versus Perth is at 3:30pm.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald