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News / Sports / Clark County Sports

Ridgefield Raptors stave off Portland Pickles rally to secure series win

Raptors' early lead holds up in 5-3 win

By Will Denner, Columbian staff writer
Published: June 15, 2023, 11:10pm

PORTLAND — Quincy Scott’s smile said it all.

Just a matter of hours after flying up from Southern California Thursday morning to join the Ridgefield Raptors in their road series against the Portland Pickles, Scott got the start at centerfield and came up with one of the biggest defensive plays of the game.

Portland was in the midst of a three-run rally, cutting into Ridgefield’s 4-0 lead in the fourth inning when Portland’s Jackson Waller hit a fly ball to shallow center that Scott dove and caught for the third out, ending the inning.

As he jogged back to the Raptors dugout, Scott was grinning. One, because he denied a base hit to Waller, who he grew up with in San Diego, and two, it prevented the Pickles from scoring the tying run.

“Once I found out he was out here, I got super happy. I did play him in a little bit because I know what he hits, I know how he hits,” Scott said of Waller. “I just found it really funny to rob him of a run.”

The Raptors’ lead stood for the remainder of the game in a 5-3 win over the Pickles, as the visitors took two of three in the series at Walker Stadium.

Jake Tsukada provided an RBI double in the eighth inning for a two-run cushion and Camden Oram threw four scoreless innings in relief of starter Sawyer Allen, who earned the win in a five-inning outing with four strikeouts, six hits and three earned runs allowed — all in that fateful fourth inning.

“A lot of us, I think at this stage, we learn how to deal with our emotions better than a lot of other young players would,” Scott said. “We just kept our composure, we knew the game wasn’t over just because they scored three runs. It doesn’t mean anything. After that, when we put up that run, we knew it was over.”

Portland (7-5) put Ridgefield through the wringer in Tuesday’s series opener with an 11-1, but the Raptors looked like a different team each of the next two nights.

A 4-2 Raptors win Wednesday was highlighted by strong defense and pitching with timely hits.

Thursday’s series finale was much of the same, with a heavy emphasis on hitting.

Ridgefield (6-6) took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Andy Allanson connected on a double to the outfield wall to bring in Tsukada.

The Raptors hung three more runs on the Pickles in the third inning, all with two outs.

Reiss Calvin delivered the first RBI single, scoring Jack Nicklaus. Next up, Scott hit a fly ball to center, where a diving Naighel Calderon narrowly missed making the catch. Instead, Calvin and Allanson came in to score, giving the Raptors a 4-0 lead.

“We lost the first game, won the second. This game meant a lot,” Scott said. “We needed this one to win the series and I think we all wanted it. We wanted it a lot more than them in the beginning.”

Scott, a UC Santa Barbara commit, hadn’t played since his season at Palomar College ended May 6. He quickly settled in with his new Ridgefield team, going 2-for-5 with two RBI. Allanson led the Raptors with three hits and Tsukada went 2-for-4.

“The guys are really cool,” Scott said. “I’ve never really traveled like this to go play summer ball; I’ve always played summer ball at home.”

Portland’s Nicky Markantanatos and Xiage Lancaster led the Pickles with two hits apiece. The latter provided an RBI double as part of the Pickles’ three-run fourth inning, which also included an RBI ground-rule double from Armando Briseno and a Cameron Dayton RBI.

Next up for Ridgefield is a three-game home series against the Cowlitz Black Bears beginning Friday at Ridgefield Outdoor Recreation Complex.

Click here for the full box score