Sunday, June 26, 2022
June 26, 2022

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Raptors surge late to avoid sweep

Ridgefield beats Cowlitz 9-5

By , Columbian sports reporter

RIDGEFIELD — It took more than half a game, but once the Ridgefield Raptors’ bats got going, they didn’t stop. The Raptors scored nine runs in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings to earn a 9-5 win over Cowlitz on Sunday at the Ridgefield Outdoor Recreation Complex.

“It just boosts confidence,” Raptor outfielder Michael Yourg said of the sudden outbreak of bats. “The more barrels you see and the more runners on base you see happen, the more you believe you’re going to come up and do that.”

It ends the Bears’ league win streak at seven games, draws Ridgefield (3-4) to within two games of the second-half division lead and avoids a confidence-killing sweep.

“It was huge,” Yourg said. “It’s always big to win on a Sunday to avoid a sweep like that.”

Ridgefield tallied eight hits to the Black Bears’ 12, but had four timely extra-base hits. Brenden Nipp (Campbellsville) got the win after throwing 1.2 innings without a run.

The Raptors host a nonleague two-game series with the Highline Bears starting Tuesday, before hosting the Portland Pickles in a return to West Coast League play on Friday.

Three key moments

Two outs, two Michaels — After two quick outs in the bottom of the sixth, the Raptors mustered five runs. Jonny Weaver and Dusty Garcia drew walks and Steve Ramirez was plunked in the head to load the bases. Michael Hicks (Boise State) put the Raptors on the board with a two-RBI single to right field and then Ramirez scored on a wild pitch. Michael Yourg (San Diego) gave Ridgefield a 5-4 lead with a two-RBI triple down the first-base line. “Pretty electric,” Yourg said of the dugout after the inning. “Putting up a crooked number like that, it’s pretty exciting.”

In the Nipp of time — Brenden Nipp (Campbellsville) got the call to make his third appearance of the summer after Carter Powell walked in the game-tying run in the seventh inning. Nipp made the most of it, striking out his sixth batter of the season and getting a fly out to keep the game tied at 5-5 entering the seventh-inning stretch.

Doubling up — Jonny Weaver (Grand Canyon) and Dusty Garcia (Arizona State) hit back-to-back RBI doubles to give the Raptors a 7-5 lead in the seventh inning.

Three key players

Ryan Kim — The Bears right fielder went 3 for 3 with a pair of two-out hits, a pair of doubles, a pair of runs and an RBI.

Jonny Weaver — The Grand Canyon University sophomore was 1 for 4 with a go-ahead double in the seventh inning. He also stole his eighth base of the year.

Wyatt Hoffman — The Raptor second baseman was 2 for 4 with an RBI and a run. The University of the Pacific product also had a game-ending double play, in which he caught a blooper in shallow right field before turning and picking off the runner at first. “It was a great play,” Yourg said. “It was one of the best over-the-shoulder catches I’ve ever watched. Icing on top to pick the guy off at first.”

Three numbers

2 — Times that Raptor catcher Steve Ramirez was hit in the head by a pitch. It came on consecutive at-bats in the sixth and seventh innings. The Riverside City College product completed the game.

8 — Raptors runners caught stealing this season, a league low. The Raptors had one runner thrown out Sunday.

31.1 — Innings pitched by University of Portland’s Peter Allegro this season, a Raptors’ team-high. Allegro closed Sunday’s game for his third relief appearance. He also has five starts.


Cowlitz 100 012 100—5 12 2

Ridgefield 000 005 22x—9 8 1


Pitching — Alex Salazar 4 IP, 1 H, 2 BB, 3 K; Kyle Smyth 1.2 IP, 1 H, 4 R, 2 BB, 1 K; Ellis Stevens .2 IP (L), 4 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 1 K; Dale Takalo 1 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 1 K; Zack Smith .2 IP; Highlights — Austin Bell 1-4, SB; Andres Sosa 1-4; Ryan Kim 3-3, 2 2B, 2 R, RBI; Luke Price 1-3, 2B, R, RBI; Josh Marchese 1-3, RBI; Seth Beckstead 1-4, 2B, RBI; Colton Sakamoto 1-4; Sam Ireland 3-4, SB, 2B, 2 R.


Pitching — Ethan Clough 5 IP, 8 H, 4 R, 2 BB, 3 K; Carter Powell 1.1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 1 K; Brenden Nipp 1.2 IP (W), 1 H, 2 K; Peter Allegro 1 IP, 1 H, 1 K; Highlights — Jonny Weaver 1-4, SB, 2B, 2 R, RBI; Dusty Garcia 1-3, 2B, R, RBI; Michael Hicks 1-4, R, 2 RBI; Michael Yourg 1-4, 3B, 2 RBI; Brody Barnum 1-4, 2B, R; Jack Bauer 1-3, R; Wyatt Hoffman 2-4, R, RBI.

Columbian sports reporter

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