CAMAS — It was more important for the Mountain View baseball team to win Thursday in its Class 3A Greater St. Helens League clash at Camas.
And the Thunder played like it.
Mountain View clinched at least a share of the league title with 10-0 rout over the Papermakers. Zach Torson struck out eight in the five-inning game that was called by the mercy rule.
The two teams play again Friday — at Mountain View — for the top seed to the district tournament. If Camas wins, both teams will finish 10-2 in the GSHL and the Papermakers will take the No. 1 seed because of a strength-of-victory formula.
Mountain View needs a win today to capture the league outright and take the top seed.
“We knew this one was key,” Torson said. “We had to come out with some intensity.”
Torson finished with a three-hitter and walked one with his eight strikeouts. A fine line, especially considering he fell behind in the count much of the day.
“Effectively wild,” Mountain View coach Aaron Coiteux said. “He calmed down when we needed him to get the outs. That’s important.”
“I did a good job of battling today,” Torson said.
Jake Shelley did the job with the bat and glove for the Thunder. He hit a run-scoring double in the third inning, and he had two gems on defense.
He had a diving stop behind second base, then a flip to start a double play in the bottom of the first.
“That set the tone,” Coiteux said. “We had scored (in the top of the first) and then they got their leadoff guy on. That was a fantastic play.”
In the bottom of the third, Shelley saved a run from scoring by backing up an overthrow on a stolen base with a Camas runner on third base.
Michael Rivers went 3 for 3 and drove in a run. He got it started in the first with a single and a stolen base and then came home on a double play. He also scored in the third on Shelley’s double. An error made it 3-0 for the Thunder after three.
Mountain View blew it open with a five-run fourth inning, with five singles and two walks.
Brandon Rudolph and Shelley each drove in a run in the frame, and Ryan Johnson had a two-run single to make it 8-0.
Rivers got a run-scoring double in the fifth, then came home on an error to make it 10.
Torson retired the final eight Camas batters for the shutout.
Round one went to Mountain View and with it, at least a share of the league title. Camas would like to share it, as well.
To be determined Friday.