Indians baseball team takes Putnam to the wire
MILWAUKIE — For the first time this season, the Scappoose Indians were in a tight game, with a real chance to win going into the final inning.
The Indians trailed Putnam by only one run as they came up to bat in the top of the seventh Tuesday at Putnam.
But a win was not quite to be. The Kingsmen held on for a 5-4 victory.
Scappoose's Mike Reed led off the seventh and reached safely after chopping a 2-2 pitch to the left side of the infield that Kingsmen third baseman Tanner Drog struggled to handle cleanly.
Quincy Cleveland came to the plate looking to bunt, but pulled off the first pitch as Reed took two steps toward second. Putnam catcher K.J. Ruffo threw behind Reed, who slipped as he tried to retreat to first and then got tagged out in a 2-3-6-4 rundown.
"It's easy to anticipate a ball being down in that situation," Indians coach Cameron Webb said. "We just need to work on making sure of the ball being down before we go."
Cleveland then got under a fastball and hit a fly out to left, and Breeler Mann stepped up and did the same — fastball, fly out to left, game over.
"We could have won the game if we'd cleaned up some things … things that we can control that can make us better," Webb said.
He said the coaches talked to the players afterward "about controlling our emotions during the game and that we shouldn't have to wait for things to go our way to put up a fight."
On Wednesday, Scappoose returned to Putnam for the second game of a three-game Northwest Oregon Conference series. The Kingsmen were even better, with three pitches holding the Indians without a hit in a 8-0 victory that dropped Scappoose to 1-9 overall. Putnam got its runs on two hits and 13 walks.
Maybe the Indians were still looking back a bit at the series opener. In that game, they took a 2-0 first-inning lead when Mann reached on a two-out single, Terrence Lewis followed with a double to right, and both runners scored on an error.
Putnam got a run back in the first after Indians starter Liam McMullen hit a batter and gave up an infield single.
In the second inning, the Kingsmen turned two walks, a passed ball, a sacrifice fly and an RBI ground out into two runs and took a 3-2 lead.
Putnam added two runs in the fourth.
Scappoose rallied in the sixth. Lewis led off with a double to right, and Gavin Larson followed with an RBI double to the gap in left-center. Larson advanced to third on Ben Anicker's ground out to second and scored when Jordan Buchanan drove a 1-1 pitch to the fence in left. That pulled the Indians to within 5-4.
The Kingsmen got out of the inning when they retired Logan Travis on a bouncer to the mound and got Tyler Souvenir to ground out to third.
"I love seeing the fight from our guys to come back at the end," Webb said. "It's just frustrating to not see them come out on top because I know how hard they work and I wanted it for them."
Said Putnam coach Chad McGowan: "It wasn't our best effort … but we did just enough in the right spots to get the win."
Putnam's two wins over Scappoose listed the Kingsmen to 10-3 overall.