Also: Gladstone guys rout Astoria

Gladstone High School softball players last week continued on track for possibly the best season in school history, upping their record to 25-1 with practice-game wins over Class 5A Cleveland (6-5) and Colton (9-6).

The May 21 win at Colton was the Gladiators’ 19th win in a row. The 19 wins in a row is thought to be a school-record win string.

Ranked fourth in the state, the Gladiators were to host a Class 4A first-round state playoff game this afternoon against a yet-to-be-determined opponent. With a win in that game they’d advance to a state quarterfinal game this Friday, also likely to be played at home.

With wins today and in Friday’s quarterfinal the Gladiators would set a new school record for most wins in a season.

The Gladiators were in unfamiliar territory in their May 20 game with Cleveland. The Warriors put the ball in play often and the Gladiators found themselves trailing 5-3 at the end of the first five innings.

Junior Andra Breshears sparked a three-run winning rally in the bottom of the sixth when she led off the inning with a double. Freshman Kinzi McLeod and junior Molly Webster both singled to bring one run around.

Senior Megan Kirchem plated a second run with a one-out bloop single to left. Freshman Madi Mott singled, sophomore Kat Kerr drew a base on balls and Kirchem scored the game-winner on a Warrior error.

Kirchem pitched for Gladstone, striking out seven, walking one and yielding 11 hits and five runs, only two of which were earned runs.

The Gladiators swung their bats in the narrow win, reaching two Cleveland pitchers for 13 hits and only striking out two times.

Kirchem (3-for-4, 2 runs), Webster (2-for-3, double), Mott (2-for-3) and junior Melisa Campos (2-for-3) headed up the slugfest.

The Gladiators put four runs on the scoreboard in the third inning and they led the rest of the way in their 9-6 win at Colton. They stung the ball for 12 hits, but four errors proved costly. Only three of Colton’s six runs were earned.

Mott pitched, striking out three and walking one, while giving up six hits.

The Gladiators had five players with two hits: Winkle (2-for-3, 4 RBI), Kerr (2-for-4, double), Julia Schumaker (2-for-5), Kirchem (2-for-5) and McLeod (2-for-2, 2-run single).

Gladstone guys

humble the Fishermen

Gladstone High School’s baseball team was looking good heading into the Class 4A state playoffs.

When the Gladiators won 11-1 in five innings in a practice game at Astoria on May 20, it was the Gladiators’ fifth win in a row and their seventh win in their last eight games.

“All the years that I’ve been doing this, you’re going to have your ups and downs,” said Gladstone coach Casey Webster. “You’re going to have them at some point. I’m very proud of the kids for coming together at the right time. We needed to win our last four league games, or our season might have been over. I told the kids that, and they’ve responded. Hopefully we can keep it going as we continue into the playoffs.”

Ranked sixth in the state in the OSAA RPI rankings, the Tri-Valley Conference co-champion Gladiators (18-8, 10-5) were to host 26th-ranked Mazama (9-16) in a Class 4A state playoff play-in game on May 23. With a win in that game they’d advance to today’s Class 4A playoffs first-round..

The Gladiators were all business in the practice game with Astoria. For the Fishermen (15-7), who are ranked 10th in the state, it was only their third loss in their last sixteen games. It was the most runs they had given up since a 12-3 early preseason loss to Class 5A St. Helens.

Junior Trask Telesmanich got the Gladiators off to a strong start when he hit a two-run home run in the first inning, his first round-tripper of the year.

The Gladiators then put the game away in the third inning, when they stretched their advantage to 9-0, scoring seven runs on four hits, a walk, a couple of hit batters, a fielder’s choice and one error.

Senior A.J. Swalko (2-for-4, 2 doubles, 2 RBI) led off the big inning with double. A walk and hit batter later, junior Austin Krieger followed with a two-run double. Senior Mitchell Foeller had a two-run single later in the inning, and Telesmanich (2-for-3) finished off the scoring with a run-scoring single.

Senior Cody Swenson was sharp on the mound in the five-inning game, striking out four, walking no one and yielding just three hits and one earned run.