Little League: Twin two-run shots lift Salmon Creek

District 6 All-Stars beat Spokane South

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photoSalmon Creek's Koby Kimball is mobbed by teammates after hitting a home run in the first inning of Sunday's Little League state tournament game against Spokane.

(/The Columbian)

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photoSalmon Creek's Brody Barnum snags a fly ball in right field for the out in the first inning against Spokane during the Little League baseball state tournament at Fort Vancouver Little League fields on Sunday.

(/The Columbian)

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Koby Kimball was in a bit of a homer drought.

Brody Barnum had never driven a pitch deep to right field.

Change happened at a good time for both Salmon Creek All-Stars on Sunday at the Washington State Little League Tournament. Each hit a two-run homer and Casey Marin pitched 2⅔ innings in relief for the win as the District 6 champions opened with an 11-3 victory over Spokane South at the Fort Vancouver Little League fields.

It was a 1-0 game in the bottom of the first inning when Kimball blasted a two-run homer to left-center field.

“It was exciting,” Kimball said of his no-doubt shot. “I’m really glad that I hit one, too, because I haven’t done it in a long time. It got us going, and the momentum helped us. It was a low fastball, and I just hit it.”

Kimball was 3 for 4 with the homer and a double that got Salmon Creek really rolling in a seven-run third inning to take control at 10-1. That double followed Barnum’s two-run homer that made it 5-1 in the third.

“It was an outside pitch, and it was the first time I’ve ever gone to right field with a home run,” Barnum said. “It was fun.”

Alex McGarry closed out the win as they and starter Johnny Carter scattered six hits and allowing a single run in three separate innings.

Salmon Creek later tacked on a Kartor Graves solo homer in the fifth. Spokane South went through five pitchers, with starter Dawson Pate taking the loss.

Salmon Creek also turned two inning-ending double plays — one to end the game — and recorded one perfect inning.

Despite the loss, Spokane South did turn in the defensive play of the game to end the second inning. Second baseman Michael Thew ranged far to his right behind the bag for a diving snag of Alex McGarry's grounder, rolled and flipped the ball over his shoulder to shortstop Evan Weaver to force out Zeke Oien, who entered as a courtesy runner for Liam Farrell.

Looking to “just keep it going,” in the words of coach Steve McGarry (father of Alex), Salmon Creek will play Eastlake of Sammamish at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.

MAJOR (11-12) STATE BASEBALL

at Fort Vancouver LL

Sunday’s Games

Salmon Creek 11, Spokane South 3

Eastlake 5, Kent 1

North Bothell 12, Pasco 5

Alderwood 13, Bainbridge 11

Chehalis 9, West Seattle 3 (loser out)

Monday’s Games

G11, South Whidbey vs. Pasco, 3 p.m. (loser out)

G12, Bainbridge vs. Chehalis, 2:30 p.m. (loser out)

G13, Asotin County vs. Kent, 5 p.m. (loser out)

G14, Central Vancouver vs. Spokane South, 5:30 p.m. (loser out)

Tuesday’s Games

G15, Salmon Creek vs. Eastlake, 5:30 p.m.

G16, North Bothell vs. Alderwood, 5 p.m.

G17, G11 winner vs. G12 winner, 2:30 p.m. (loser out)

G18, G13 winner vs. G14 winner, 3 p.m. (loser out)

SALMON CREEK 11, SPOKANE SOUTH 3

Spokane South 001 011 — 3 6 2

Salmon Creek 307 01x —11 11 3

Salmon Creek highlights

Pitching — Johnny Carter, 1⅔ IP, 2 K, 2 BB; Casey Marin, 2⅔ IP, Win, 1 K, 0 BB; Alex McGarry, 1⅔ IP, 1 K, 0 BB. Hitting — Kartor Graves 2-4, HR, RBI; Brody Barnum 2-4, HR, 2 RBI; Koby Kimball 3-4, HR, 2B, 3 RBI; Josh Thompson 2-3; Dylan Bartos 1-2, RBI; Kevin Barth 1-2, RBI.

Spokane South highlights

Pitching — Dawson Pate, 2+ IP, Loss, 2 K, 1 BB; Nick Merkel, ⅓ IP, 0 K, 1 BB; Evan Weaver, ⅔ IP, 0 K, 1 BB; Isaac Werkman, ⅔ IP, 2 K, 1 BB; Caleb Hill, 1⅓ IP, 1 K, 0 BB. Hitting — Michael Thew 1-3; Dawson Pate 2-3, 2B; Miles LaValley 1-2, Luke Burke 1-1, RBI; Ian O’Brien 1-2, Connor Coballes 0-2, SAC, RBI.

ALDERWOOD 13, BAINBRIDGE 11

Bainbridge 300 062 —11 9 2

Alderwood 510 43x —13 12 1

NORTH BOTHELL 12, PASCO 5

North Bothell 104 364 —12 6 3

Pasco 010 040 — 5 4 1

EASTLAKE 5, KENT 1

Eastlake 000 401 —5 6 2

Kent 010 000 —1 2 1

CHEHALIS 9, WEST SEATTLE 3

West Seattle 001 101 —3 4 2

Chehalis 341 01x —9 8 3

(Click here for tournament bracket)