Perth Stuns Lakeridge OIBA, Paulson’s No-Hitter

By Jeremy McDonald

SALEM, Ore.–  Never doubt the Australians.

One thing about the Perth Heat Colte team is that if they want it, they’ll get it done.
For the second time in the DeMarini Wood Bat tournament at Schafer Stadium in Salem, Oregon, the team from down under found the way to win to get to the Championship game Sunday.
Down 5-3 entering the seventh inning, the Heat brought the Heat with a triple by Matt Gaughran to start an inning in which they turned a two-run deficit to a 11-5 lead by innings end.
“It’s definitely a tough thing to do when the boys are down through the fifth inning and then we rallied back, put a few hits together and actually come together as a team, which we struggled to do occasionally, but we came together as a team and looked really good,” said Gaughran.
Lakeridge’s OIBA PrimeLending jumped out to a 5-3 lead on the Perth Heat before the Colts rallied late (Picture By Jeremy McDonald)
PrimeLending (Lakeridge High School) Head Coach Marco Tavera knew his team could do all they could do defensively with Spencer Gore pitching for the first time in a while entering that inning, but Perth just found that groove to get them at the end.
“It’s obviously pretty frustrating, we made plays all game long,” said Tavera. “Like I just told our kids at the end of the game, it’s bad luck.  You got a pitcher who hasn’t pitched all year for us really as a freshman, comes in and throws really well and hits the first two guys in the seventh but then we came in behind him and didn’t make some plays and they hit some baseballs.
“They hit the ball in the seventh inning, there’s nothing you can say about that.  It’s frustrating but at the same time, I love the way our boys competed this weekend and even in this game they competed well.”
With Perth entering the 5pm Championship game, these two comeback wins surely has helped the team come together as one with the confidence of knowing the guy behind them has their back.
“It’s great to know when your in the batter’s box and you got a guy behind you that’s going to score you.  It brings a lot of confidence to team,” said Gaughran.  “It definitely gives us, coming into the next game.  I mean our pitching staff is awesome, we got a great bat lineup through so, it’s definitely give you our 10 good runs.”
In Saturday’s win to set up Sunday afternoon’s match-up in Salem, Hunter Paulson surely showcased his pitching talents with his nine-strikeout, two-walk performance to help the soon-to-be-senior build some momentum for his senior year to come.
Paulson described the game as one of the best games he’s ever thrown up to this point, and why not?  It ended up as his first ever no-no.
“Well, it’s my first no-hitter I’ve ever thrown and it felt really good that I could do it for my team and have the strikeouts that I wanted and them not getting on base and being able to keep us in the game and not have the other team kind of not getting their way in there,” said Paulson.
As for an encore?  To continue this trend towards a great senior season?
Let’s just say he’s gunning for another no-no.

“Trying to get another one,” smiled and laughed Paulson.  “Basically keep working.  Getting a lot more bullpens over the summer and in the offseason too and just make sure I can bring that to the TRl.”



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