By Jeremy McDonald
SALEM, Ore.– Western Christian survived a bases loaded jam in the top half of the sixth up 3-1 when Rylan Webster picked up a third-out strikeout to end the threat against Culver Wednesday afternoon.
It was the rubber match in the 2A/1A Special District 2 league series between the two squads. The Bulldogs walked off Game one of Monday’s doubleheader 4-3 in Culver before the Pioneers stormed off with Game 2 14-1.
The bats weren’t there run-support wise as they were Game 2, but Ethan Halgren’s solo shot gave Western Christian some more breathing room up 4-1 entering the seventh inning.
“It was going good. We were hitting the ball but we made some silly mistakes out in the field and out on the base-paths, so that kind of led to the ending. It wasn’t what we wanted, but it happens,” said Halgren.
They’re still shaking off some rust just wrapping up their sixth-game of the year, some kids haven’t played in a few years so it’s going to take some time to get back into the groove of things said Halgren.
Entering the top half of the seventh, that breathing room quickly turned into a 4-all tie as similarly to the first game of the series on Monday, some routine plays gave an opportunity to the Bulldogs to take advantage of to get back into the game.
The Pioneers couldn’t capitalize in the bottom half of the seventh inning, having the game-winning run being tagged out at home on a fielder’s choice that led to extra innings. Culver in the top half of the eighth inning put the game away with an four-run frame for the 8-4 victory to take the three-game series two-games to one.
And with 9-1 Kennedy up next for their three-game series, a game like Wednesday’s can definitely serve as a kick-in-the-butt moving forward to the next big task ahead.
“It’s definitely eye-opening,” said Halgren. “It’s not good to lose but these are the ones you could learn from. It’s going to give us a chip on our shoulder for Kennedy, we don’t want to lose again and that’s always good to have something like that.”