By Jeremy McDonald
EUGENE, Ore.– The Papa’s Pizza Invitational Baseball Tournament, that’s in its 46th season, has featured some tough teams through the years and the Post 58 Crushers have gotten a taste of that two days into Pool play. Having played the Roseburg Doc Stewarts, Rose City Baseball and Post 6 Barbers entering Friday’s doubleheader.
“We just got to be prepared. We’re playing really good teams right now and this is a good warm-up for league. The team we just played (the Barbers) made it pretty far in the State Tournament, so this is a really good tune-up for league games,” Stayton’s Nick Frith said of his Crushers team. “But we’re just playing really good teams right now. We’re struggling a little bit, but we’ll figure it out tomorrow.”
The Barbers brought a stout defense. Coming off a deep American Legion Triple-A State run this past Summer, the Barbers were on pace for a perfect game until the fourth inning with Frith was Hit-By-Pitched and Cascade’s Caleb Boyles broke up the no-hitter bid soon after. Boyles and Stayton’s Cody Leming owned the lone two hits that the Crushers had in the 10-0, five-inning defeat to Post 6 Thursday afternoon.
Boyles points towards their hitting, which has been in a little bit of a funk recently, as a point of emphasis to work on as they take on the defending Alaska State Champion in Eagle River before taking on Mudville soon after.
“Our hitting. Just knowing the rest of the teams in the tournament are tough, and that’s just our problem is that we’re not hitting as well as other teams. We got to change something, I don’t know what it is. It’s not hitting more because we hit enough, but it’s something mentally…I can’t tell you what it is, but we need to figure something out because we’re not hitting well,” Boyles said. “Hopefully more at-bats will straighten things out so we can get back on the sticks. We’ll see good pitching the next two days in this tournament, so hopefully more at-bats can help us hit better is all I could say.”
Post 58 plays Eagle River at 1:40 before playing Mudvill at 4pm at North Eugene High School.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald