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Twins tune up for postseason

Tigard clinches a legion playoff berth with its 6-2 win over Sherwood
by: DAN BROOD, AXEL ROLLS — Tigard Twins pitcher Axel Cederberg fires a pitch to the plate in the first inning of Tuesday’s game with Sherwood. Tigard scored a 6-2 victory.

TIGARD - The Twins say they're ready for the playoffs.

On Tuesday, they showed just how ready they are.

The Tigard Twins American Legion AAA baseball team wrapped up its postseason bid in impressive fashion Tuesday as it battled its way to a 6-2 win over Sherwood in a league game played at Tigard High School.

'I think we'll do well in the playoffs,' Tigard right fielder Jeff Jones said after the victory. We've been doing well all summer. We have good defense and hitting and we've got a lot of pitching.'

With the win, Tigard moved to 13-6 in league play at that time. That mark put the Twins in third place in the league standings behind Alpenrose Dairy from Wilson High School and Dr. Barney's from Southridge High.

Tigard opens the Area playoffs with a first-round, best-of-three series against Hillsboro. The first game of the series will be played Saturday at Hare Field in Hillsboro. The second game will be played Sunday at Tigard High School.

The third game, if needed, will be played Monday at Hare Field. Game times had not been set when the Times went to press.

The winner of the series advances to the second round of the playoffs, which will also be a best-of-three series.

Twins coach Jason Stanley said there will be one key factor for his team in postseason play.

'Our pitching - that's the key,' he said. 'That's the one thing we've been able to count on.'

Tigard got a strong pitching performance from Axel Cederberg, a Tigard High School junior-to-be, in the win over the Bowmen. Cederberg turned in a complete-game performance, allowing two runs on six hits while striking out five and walking one.

'My fastball was working today,' Cederberg said. 'I hit the corners. I got in the groove and threw strikes.'

Tigard grabbed a quick lead in Tuesday's game, scoring a pair of runs in the bottom of the first inning.

Jones got things started with a leadoff infield single. He moved to second base on a Sherwood error on a pickoff attempt and then advanced to third on a groundout by Josh Harbolt.

Then, after Andrew Woolfe drew a walk, Jones scored the game's first run on the front end of a double steal, with Woolfe getting tagged out in a rundown between first and second.

The Twins added another run in the frame when Gunnar Cederberg doubled to left-center field and then scored on Nate Grisham's single to right.

The Bowmen bounced right back, scoring twice in the top of the second inning to tie the game.

Derek Kotowski started the frame with a leadoff single to right field. Taylor Hill reached on a Tigard error and Jason Erwin followed with a single to right to load the bases.

Kotowski then scored when Ryan Codling hit into a double play, cutting the Twins' lead to 2-1. Tyler Remmey then hit an RBI single to right, driving in Hill to tie the game. The Bowmen, thanks to a double by Johnny Wade, threatened to take the lead, but a fly ball out ended the inning.

The Twins would then take the lead for good by scoring two times in the bottom of the second inning. Isaiah Ferrer got things going with a one-out single to right field. Axel Cederberg and Jim Blood were both hit by pitches to load the bases with one out.

Jones then singled to center field, driving in Ferrer with the go-ahead run. Axel Cederberg would score on a sacrifice fly by Harbolt later in the inning to give Tigard a 4-2 lead.

The Twins tacked on their final two runs of the game in the bottom of the fourth inning. Blood drew a leadoff walk and he moved all the way to third on Harbolt's one-out single to right.

Woolfe then hit a sacrifice fly to centerfield, bringing in Blood to up the margin to 5-2. Harbolt scored later on a single by Grisham to make the score 6-2.

Sherwood got a one-out single by Wade in the fifth inning, but he was left stranded.

Erwin led off the Bowmen seventh with a triple to deep right.

'It was an outside pitch and I just hit it that way,' he said.

Erwin was then thrown out at home by Woolfe, Tigard's first baseman, who fielded a hard ground ball hit by Codling. Remmey then lined out into a double play to end the contest.

'We're looking forward to the playoffs,' Axel Cederberg said. 'It will be fun. Hopefully, we can keep this going.'

Tigard had 10 base hits in the victory. Grisham had three of those hits. Jones and Harbolt each added two.

Erwin and Wade each had two hits for the Bowmen. Kotowski and Remmey added a hit apiece.

'We were out of pitchers and we gave up some walks,' said Eric Beasley, who was coaching the Sherwood team on Tuesday. 'That was the difference..'

Sherwood still had hopes of getting the league's No. 5 seed to the Area playoffs. A lot depended on the Bowmen's doubleheader with Central Catholic on Wednesday. Results of those games were not available when the Times went to press.