Brendan Slothower delivers in the 8th
PORTLAND - Gresham Nationals have been Clackamas' nemesis in Little League baseball over the past two seasons.
But Clackamas 10-11 All-Stars ended Gresham's reign at the recent District 2 Championship Tournament, defeating the Gresham ball club in two out of three games to claim the title.
The title game with Gresham Nationals was a barnburner. The score was tied at 2-2 in the second extra inning when Brendan Slothower won the game with an eighth-inning walk-off home run, his first round-tripper of the all-star season.
With two down in the bottom of the eighth, Evan Lochridge gave the local team hope when he reached on a base hit.
Enter Slothower, who stepped to the plate with a one-ball, two-strike count and hammered the ball 240-feet over the fence in center field for the game-winner.
Meanwhile Anthony Brink and Lochridge took care of business on the hill.
Lochridge struck out four of six batters he faced in two innings of relief. Brink recorded seven strikeouts and allowed only two runs in six frames.
In other district tournament games, Clackamas bounced Gresham Americans 10-5, Centennial 5-1 and Gresham Nationals 8-5, before losing to Gresham Nationals 3-1.
Brink pitched in the win over the Gresham Americans, striking out 10. He also pitched in the 8-5 win over Gresham Nationals, striking out seven.
Justin Wyler fanned nine and walked two, while scattering three hits in the win over Centennial.
Wyler also pitched in the loss to the Gresham Nationals, striking out eight and walking three in a 4-hitter.
'Our strengths were hitting and very strong defense,' said Clackamas manager Don Wyler. 'And our pitching was five deep.'
Vying for the Clackamas All-Stars at district were: Brink (pitcher/catcher), Wyler (pitcher/shortstop), Lochridge (catcher, shortstop/pitcher), Slothower (outfield), Marcus Young (outfield/pitcher), Dalen Lipsey (third/first/pitcher), Daniel Buckley (outfield/catcher), Braedon Daniels (outfield), Joey Opoka (outfield), Mick Parr (second/shortstop), Dylan Sanders (outfield) and D.J. Strobridge (first).
Rodger Parr was head coach.
The District 2 title advanced Clackamas to the state tournament in Adams, Oregon. The eight-team tournament runs through Saturday.
Clackamas fell to St. Helens 7-1 in its state-tournament opener.