By Jeremy McDonald
ROSEBURG, Ore.- It was a tough way to end the season, but at least they broke the playoff drought.
Playing three-straight days of high intensity baseball is tough and fatigue had sunk in for the Post 58 Crushers against the defending State Champions in the Emerald Challengers Sunday morning in one of the two elimination games on this day. The Challengers took advantage of the defensive miscues the first three innings to take a 9-2 lead on the Crushers, Post 58 had a bases loaded situation in the third where they scored their two runs off of back-to-back bases loaded walks by Cody Leming (Stayton), Tanner Manning (Regis).
Consistent hurt in the most important game of the season off of two great games leading the two days prior.
Silverton’s Carson Waples had a RBI ground hit in the fifth inning, but the Crushers couldn’t piece it together as they fell to Emerald 13-3 in six innings Sunday morning. Finishing Top 8 in the State of Oregon in Triple-A.
“We were all exhausted and going up against a club like that, to beat a team like that you got to be on your A-Game and not tired whatsoever,” Nick Frith said.
“It feels really great,” Frith continued about their Top 8 finish. “I think it was 2013 was the last time we made it into the tournament and it feels awesome almost ten years later to get in. I think we made a lot of people happy in the Valley.”
Head Coach Kyle Baker once pointed out during the season that his team is filled with a bunch of 2A-5A guys on his team. All but Silverton’s Sawyer Enderle, Aiden Goff Robbie Brockamp and Carson Waples are 2A-4A teams like Santiam, Stayton, Regis and Cascade. Showing that if you can ball, you can ball.
“We don’t have anybody from bigger than a 5A school, and that’s just Silverton,” Manning said. “We’re just a bunch of small school kids. It doesn’t matter what division you are from, 6A or 2A/1A like most of us were it’s Legion. Doesn’t matter where you play, if you can play you can play.”
Brockamp was injured with an ankle injury during their 10-7 defeat to Hillsboro on Saturday and had to be carted off, but was playing Sunday knowing how much his team needed him and he knew that this would be the last time he’ll play with guys like Manning on the field.
“Yeah injury, but this is some of the last times I’ll get to play with these guys. So I wanted to make sure we went out on a high-note with the team and make sure I’m out there with them,” Brockamp said. “We’ve had our ups-and-downs for sure, but we started to connect after the Idaho trip and it just came together. We had a rough start to league with Withnell, but after that we clicked in. It was fun for sure.”
Frith went three-and-a-third innings with two strikeouts and led the offense with a 2-for-3 day batting. Western Christian’s Owen Stalnaker collected the third of three hits that Post 58 hit as they wrapped up the season at Legion Field in Roseburg.
“It was a blast, you got a great group of guys who play compeitive baseball. I played it last year and I played it this year. Legion itself is a great experience, you get to play a lot of great teams and is something I recommend a lot of people do,” Manning said of the Summer.
“It was really fun,” adds Frith of the Summer. “I had a great time. A lot of new guys, it’s a lot of baseball and it was real fun.”
Photos By Jeremy McDonald