Hops Made it Four in a Row Over Canadians, 4-2
Hops made it a series win by winning their fourth game of the series with two left to play. Scoring four runs in the middle innings was enough for the Hillsboro Hops to defeat the Vancouver Canadians 4-2.
Jake Rice Makes Hops Debut
The game was mostly strikeouts and ground balls with intermittent scoring. There was very little thunder (three doubles) but plenty of lightning (five stolen bases). By the end of the game, the Hops had won their fourth in a row with efficiency, scoring four runs on only four hits.
Newcomer Jake Rice started for the Hops and debuted with a slow start but sharp ending. Jake gave up a run to the Canadians when Philip Clarke’s RBI single scored Eric Rivera in the first. It would be the only lead the Canadians would know tonight. After that, Jake settled down and allowed only Will Robertson’s single in the first and Trevor Schwecke’s single to lead off the second. When he left the mound for the final time, he walked away with a 1-0 lead.
Kai-Wei Lin (W, 2-0) covered the next two innings with three strikeouts and no runs. Gerald Ogando (H, 2) let Zac Cook slip through with a single and he scored the Canadians last run. But, by then, the Hops still had the lead 4-2 which would be the final score.Bobby Ay (H, 2) allowed an Addison Barger single but no score. He did run into some trouble in the ninth when he started off with two consecutive walks. Liu Fuenmayor (S, 4) came in to strike out the next three batters and end the game.
Hops Made a Four-Run Sandwich
From the other dugout, the pitching staff mostly had a good night. Six of the nine innings featured only the minimum three batters. A seventh featured four when Jorge Barrosa singled and left stranded at second. It was the two innings featuring Hops runs that sank the Vancouver boat.
The two small storms of runs was enough for the Hops to win. With two outs in the fourth, Blaze Alexander walked. He was followed by Tristin English’s RBI double. Nick Dalesandro followed Tristin with his own RBI double to give the Hops the lead 2-1. The lead remained in Hops’ hands for the rest of the game. It also handed the loss to starting pitcher for the Canadians, Paxton Schultz (L, 5-7) despite his seven strikeouts of Hops batters.
Willy Gaston relieved the next two innings and the Hops sent seven men to the plate in the sixth. With two outs, Gaston walked three consecutive batters to load the bases. It took just one single by Axel Andueza to bring two more runs home, making the score 4-1. Thomas Ruwe closed the last two innings serving notice to the Hops that there would be no more scoring from them tonight. He did it by facing the minimum six batters and striking out the side in the eighth to pound it home.
All of the Hops damage was done with two outs on the board tonight.
Standings: Hops Made it to Fourth Place
With help from last night’s win, tonight’s win increased the Hillsboro Hops’ (52-59) lead to one and a half games over the Vancouver Canadians (54-64) with two more games left to play in the season. However, Vancouver will need to win both games to take fourth place back from the Hops.
In the other tight race, both Spokane and Eugene won tonight to keep the Indians one half game above the Emeralds for first place.