Everett Aquasox Leave Hillsboro Hops Behind, 4-1
The Everett Aquasox blew open a close game in the seventh, leaving the Hillsboro Hops behind for the 4-1 win. The Aquasox climbed into a tie with the Hops for the league’s best record with five games left to go in the first half of the season.
Jose Santiago pitched the first five innings for the Aquasox, allowing one unearned run on two hits. Santiago struck out five batters and walked four. Joe Pistorese (4-0) worked the next three innings, allowing two hits while striking out three for the win. Joey Strain (S-2) closed the last inning, striking out one for the save.
Jared Miller (6-1) started for the Hops going 7.1 innings for the loss. Miller allowed four runs on 10 hits and also struck out five. Kevin Simmons pitched 1.2 innings of three-hit relief, struck out two and walked two. Ariel Hernandez came in for the last inning, and struck out two of the three batters he faced while allowing no runner to reach base.
The game’s first run came in the top of the first. Logan Taylor lined a single up the middle and then took second on a passed ball by catcher Alexis Olmeda with Corey Simpson at the plate. Simpson then lined a single to left field scoring Taylor to give the Aquasox the game’s first lead.
It didn’t take long for the Hops to catch up. With one out in the bottom of the inning, Stephen Dezzi walked on a full count. Zach Nehrir followed with a walk moving Dezzi to second. Trevor Mitsui moved both runners into scoring position with a fly ball to center fielder Braden Bishop. Josh Anderson came to the plate and catcher Arturo Nieto let a passed ball get by that allowed Dezzi to even up the score at 1-1.
The Aquasox blew the game open with three runs in the top of the seventh. Connor Hale started the assault with a walk on a full count. Drew Jackson slung the next pitch into right field for a single and moved Hale to second. Erick Mejia came in to pinch run for Hale. Braden Bishop then looped a single into right field. Luis Veras quickly grabbed the one bouncer and threw to home but the throw bounced past catcher Alexis Olmeda and Hale easily scored. Jared Miller, who was backing up the plate, quickly threw to second as Bishop attempted to steal the base on the throw to the plate. The throw was late and Jackson was safe at third.
That was enough to chase starting pitcher Jared Miller. Kevin Simmons came on in relief and Logan Taylor greeted him by slapping a grounder up the middle for a single, scoring both Hale and Jackson for the final score.
Jackson starred for the Aquasox going 4 for 5 with a double and scoring a run. Taylor went 3 for 5, scoring a run and knocking in two RBIs. Simpson went 2 for 5 and earned one RBI. Hale went 1 for 2 before being replaced by pinch runner Erick Mejia. Mejia scored the run.
The Hops scored one unearned run and only had four hits. Zach Nehrir and Josh Anderson went 1 for 3. Trevor Mitsui and Alexis Olmeda went 1 for 4.
The Hillsboro Hops (19-14) maintained a one game lead over the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes for the South Division. The Everett Aquasox (19-14) also kept their one game lead over the Tri-City Dust Devils for the North Division.
The Hops gained a player tonight. Galli Cribbs, Jr came down from Cade County and played third base in tonight’s game.
By Greg Stoker
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