Hillsboro Hops Edge Spokane Indians, 2-1
The Hillsboro Hops used defense to slip past the Spokane Indians, 2-1. Fifteen runners were left on base in a tight game. What proved to be the winning run was from a hit batter in the bottom of the eighth.
Sergio Alcantara started the inning by beating out an infield single to shortstop Yeyson Yrizarri by sliding into first. With one out, Zach Nehrir walked on a full count to move Alcantara to second. Fernery Ozuna grounded to third baseman Ti’Quan Forbes, who tagged the lead runner for the second out. Stephen Dezzi was hit by a pitch from Jeffrey Springs. Trevor Mitsui stepped up to the plate and was hit by another pitch from Springs to force the winning run home.
Tyler Bolton was the starting pitcher for the Hops. Bolton allowed no runs or walks, and only two hits, striking out six batters in six innings. But, it wasn’t enough for the win as the game was tied until the bottom of the eighth. Ryan Burr (2-0) pitched the last 1.2 innings of one hit/no run ball striking out four of the five batters for the win.
Jeffrey Springs (0-1) pitched the last 1.2 innings for the Indians and took the loss.
The scoring didn’t start until the bottom of the third inning. With one out, Sergio Alcantara singled through the right side gap. Jeff Smith came to the plate and Alcantara stole second. When Smith grounded out to third, Alcantara slid over to third base on the throw. Zach Nehrir slapped a single through the right side gap to score Alcantara. The Hops led 1-0.
The Indians answered in the top of the seventh. Kevin Simmons relieved starting pitcher Tyler Bolton to start the inning. Dylan Moore led off with a one hop single to right field. Jamie Potts followed with a full count walk to move Moore to second. Carlos Garay hit back to the mound and Simmons threw Garay out at first. Moore moved to third and Potts to second on the throw. Diego Cedena came to the plate and catcher Jose Queliz allowed a pass ball to the back stop. Moore scored the tying run.
The eighth inning almost proved costly for the Hops when the Indians loaded the bases with only one out. Carlos Garay hit a sharp line drive up the middle. Fernery Ozuna made a diving catch that was barely within reach. Cedena was out and Ozuna kept the runners at their base. Ryan Burr struck out Diego Cedena to get the Hops out of the inning, stranding three Indians runners.
Sergio Alcantara went 2 for 3 and scored a run for the Hops. Zach Nehrir, Gerard Hernandez and Jose Queliz all went 1 for 3. Nehrir also scored and had an RBI. Stephen Dezzi went 1 for 2 and had a double.
For the Indians, Dylan Moore went 2 for 4 with a double and scored the only run. Yeyson Yritarri also went 2 for 4.
The Hillsboro Hops (12-10) stayed two games behind the Eugene Emeralds for the lead in the South Division. The Spokane Indians (12-10) fell to two games behind the Everett Aquasox for the North Division lead.
Both teams will continue Friday night for the second game in the five game series. The Hops lead it 1-0.
by Greg Stoker