The Tualatin OIBA team gets a sweep in Sunday's doubleheader
TUALATIN - It wasn't the prettiest of games.
But, when the Dawgs needed to, they came up with the big plays. The Tualatin-based Suburban Door OIBA baseball team came through in the clutch on the mound, on defense and at the plate, rallied to score a 4-2 win over Clackamas in the first game of a Murphy Division doubleheader played Sunday at Tualatin High School.
'We had guys step up in a lot of situations,' Tualatin High School junior-to-be Kyle George said after the game. 'We're playing team ball. We're not worrying about the individual stuff.'
Suburban Door also picked up a win in the second game of Sunday's doubleheader, getting a 5-1 victory.
With the two wins, the young Tualatin team improved to 2-1 on the summer season while also moving to 2-0 in Murphy Division play.
'We're looking to build new chemistry this summer,' Tualatin coach Adam Strachan said. 'One of our biggest goals will be understanding what our offensive mindset should be.'
'It's the beginning of the summer and we're just getting started,' said Tualatin junior-to-be Cooper Brunner, who was the winning pitcher in Sunday's opener. 'We definitely will grow as a team. We just need more experience.'
Brunner, a left-handed pitcher, shut out Clackamas over the first three innings of Sunday's opening game.
But the Outlaws, taking advantage of a walk and a Suburban Door throwing error, took a 1-0 lead on Jarrod Switzer's two-out RBI single in the top of the fourth inning.
The Dawgs came storming back in their half of the frame.
Brunner reached first base on a Clackamas error to start the inning. Senior-to-be Andrew Schlottmann followed with a single to left field, with Brunner advancing to third. Schlottmann then stole second base, giving the Dawgs runners on second and third with no outs.
However, the scoring threat looked to be all but erased when, following a strikeout, Brunner was picked off trying to score from third base.
But that's when Jared Sablan came through in the clutch. The junior-to-be smacked a single to left, driving in Schlottmann to tie the game at 1-1.
Sablan, who moved to second on Clackamas' throw to the plate, then scored when the Outlaws committed a pair of throwing errors, starting with a pickoff toss to second base, giving Suburban Door a 2-1 lead.
The Dawgs continued to hold to their one-run lead going into the sixth inning, but that's when Clackamas threatened again.
Garrett Myers drew a walk to lead off the inning for the Outlaws. Suburban Door then committed a throwing error following a bunt by Aaron Ahlstrom, putting runners on first and third with no outs.
The next Clackamas batter hit a grounder to the left side. George, playing at third base for the Dawgs, fielded the ball and tagged out Myers, who was diving back to the base. George then rifled a throw over to first base to complete a heads-up double play.
'That was a big-time play,' Strachan said.
'It was just kind of instinct,' George said. 'I was just going to try to get the out at first, but I saw him starting to dive back out of the corner of my eye. I tagged him and then made a throw to first.'
Connor Scott, pitching in relief, then got an inning-ending strikeout to get the Dawgs out of the frame unscathed.
The Dawgs then tacked on a pair of runs in their half of the sixth inning. Junior-to-be Brandon Shroyer got things going with a one-out walk. Sablan followed with a double to right-center field, with Shroyer advancing to third.
One out later, Jack McDonnell, in a pinch-hitting role, singled to left field, bringing in both Shroyer and Sablan to up the lead to 4-1.
Brunner pitched the first five innings of the win, giving up one unearned run on two hits while striking out two and walking one.
'My curve was working and my change-up was working,' Brunner said. 'And Jake Gellos did a good job behind the plate.'
Scott pitched the final two innings to record the save.
The Dawgs had five hits in the game. Sablan went 2 for 3 at the plate with a double, a run scored and an RBI. Schlottmann, Jon Fishback and McDonnell added one hit apiece.
McDonnell, Cole Vessey and Sablan combined to pitch the Dawgs to the win in the second game of the doubleheader.
Sablan and Brunner each had two hits and an RBI. Schlottmann also drove in a run.