Featured Stories

Other Pamplin Media Group sites

5A baseball: La Salle falls at home to Wilsonville, 13-2

The Northwest Oregon Conference-leading Falcons had a rare off day when almost everything that could go wrong against the Wildcats did go wrong

REVIEW/NEWS PHOTO: JIM BESEDA - La Salle Prep's Miles Norman hit a two-run homer in the fourth inning of Wednesday's 13-2 home loss to Wilsonville.With three games left in the regular season, La Salle Prep's baseball team has the inside track on this season's Northwest Oregon Conference championship.

The Falcons have held down the top spot in the league standings since day one and still have a one-game lead over defending-champion Putnam and Wilsonville in the chase for the league crown.

The good days have easily outnumbered the bad ones for La Salle, seeking its first league title in three seasons as a member of the NWOC, but it hasn't all been smooth sailing for coach Jake Austin's Falcons.

Wednesday's home game against Wilsonville was one of those games where almost everything that could go wrong for La Salle did go wrong.

The Falcons went through four pitchers, who surrendered 14 hits, including a couple of home runs, with six walks, two hit batters, and three wild pitches to go with three fielding errors and … well, the net result was one big mess.

Final score: Wilsonville 13, La Salle Prep 2.

The Wildcats earned a split of the two-game series with the Falcons, who did an about-face after winning Tuesday's opener 1-0 on Joel Simmons' RBI-single in the seventh at Wilsonville.

"We had an emotional game on Tuesday night, which was a big win for us, and we didn't come out ready to go today," Austin said. "Wilsonville was hungry after losing on Tuesday, and they competed a lot harder than we did. That's really all there is to it."

Ole ArntsonOle Arntson drew the start for La Salle, but the senior right-hander exited after only three innings after allowing five runs (three earned) on seven hits with three strikeouts and the Falcons trailing 5-0.

La Salle put the ball on the ball against Wilsonville starter Ben VavRosky, but struggled to get anything to drop and finished with only three hits. The lone highlight for the Falcons' offense was Miles Norman's two-run homer in the fourth inning that made it 5-2, which also was La Salle's final hit of the game.

"You take about 24 to reflect on what happened and what you can do it change it, and then you come out and get in a good practice and prepare for the next game," said Arntson, the University of the Pacific-bound pitcher/first baseman who had one of the Falcons' three hits.

"That was a letdown in some ways," he said. "We normally have extraordinary defense, so to give up some unearned runs like that, it's about coming focused. That's all it comes down to is preparation.

"Wilsonville is a great team, so we knew they were very hungry to get after it today. We knew they were going to come out and try to get us, and they did just that. They did what they needed to do."

Wilsonville's Dominic Enbody went 3-for-4 with a three-run homer in the seventh, and Gage Gloster, Kristjen Metres, and VavRosky added three hits each as the Wildcats' snapped a two-game skid.

"We showed up," Wilsonville coach Bryn Card said. "The last couple of games, we've been mentally distracted at the plate. Today we got back to being disciplined.

"That's kind of what we hang our hat on is staying in the zone, staying disciplined, and making sure the other team throws strikes."

La Salle had another bumpy ride in Friday's road game at St. Helens, but pulled out a 6-5 win after Norman scored from third on Levi Miles' RBI-groundout in the eighth inning.

St. Helens put the tying run on base with one out in the bottom of the eighth, but the game ended when Miles got Joe Rea to ground into a 6-4-3 double play.

Arnston went 2-for-4 with a solo homer and John Jensen had two hits as the Falcons (14-6, 12-2 NWOC) improved to 4-2 in games decided by one run.

"We felt good to sneak out of there with the win," Austin said. "It felt like we had a little bit of a hangover from the Wilsonville series.

"We had that four-game stretch against Putnam and Wilsonville, and our guys invested so much into that, it took a lot out of them. They really didn't have a lot left in the tank come the end of the week."

La Salle closes the regular season with a home game Tuesday against St. Helens, a road game Wednesday at Parkrose, and a home game Friday against Parkrose.

"The team has done a great job and the players have put themselves in a good position," Austin said. "A lot of it has been doing the little things right, so we've got to make sure we keep doing that."

Said Arntson: "I'm exctied about where we stand. If we play focused baseball, we're an awfully good team. It's a day-to-day thing. There's a big goal at the end, but we've got to work every single day to get there."

By Jim Beseda
Sports editor
email: // 'target='_blank'> This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Follow us on Twitter
Visit Us on Facebook