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Lakers knock off Pacers, stay atop TRL

by: Vern Uyetake, 
Lake Oswego’s Craig Mooney puts a tag on Lakeridge’s Brady Burdick during the first inning of Monday’s game.

Game one of the three-game Civil War series went to Lake Oswego on Monday.

The Lakers rode a strong pitching performance from Jared Van Hoon and pieced together some timely hitting in a pair of big innings to top their cross-town rivals 15-2.

Van Hoon threw a complete game with nine strikeouts and kept the Pacers off the board until the fifth inning.

Ben Swinford got the start for Lakeridge and pitched well early in the game but the Lakers were able to put up a run in the first two innings.

Jeff Kremer drew a walk in the first inning and stole second base and Tom Slade followed with an RBI single. Then, in the second inning, Moto Asai hit a double, Nick Rulli followed with a single and Brian Zinsmeister had a sacrifice fly to put his team up 2-0.

Lake Oswego blew the game open in the third inning. Kremer hit a double and Michael Wesner drew a walk. Van Hoon followed with a single to load the bases and Slade came through with another RBI single. Nick Torkelson drew another walk and Zinsmeister hit a two-run double. Craig Mooney completed the scoring in the inning with a sacrifice fly.

'We're playing pretty good team ball right now. There isn't one guy who is carrying us,' coach Jake Anders said.

In the top of the fifth, Lakeridge broke up the shut out with a home run by Dylan Summers.

The Lakers would then increase their lead in the bottom of the inning. Zinsmeister led off with a single and stole second base. Mooney drew a walk and Kremer sacrificed the two to second and third base.

Wesner was then hit by a pitch to load the bases and Van Hoon drew another walk. Slade hit a two-run double, to cap a solid day at the plate.

Lake Oswego didn't beat the Pacers with the big hit, instead the team was patient at the plate and got hits with runners in scoring position.

'The key was that we took advantage of our opportunities. We've had guys on base so many times (earlier in the year) and haven't been able to score them so it was nice,' Anders said.

Lakeridge got its second run in the seventh inning when Eric Hillier was hit by a pitch and stole second place. He was then plated on an RBI double by Summers, his second RBI of the afternoon.

The win keeps the Lakers tied atop the Three Rivers League with West Linn but Lake Oswego holds the tiebreaker over the Lions having won two of three games against them earlier in the season.

'This league is the toughest in the state. We can't be worrying about what West Linn does. We just have to focus on our next opponent,' Anders said.

The two teams played again on Wednesday and will complete the series on Friday.

The Lakers take on Oregon City next week while Lakeridge will face Putnam, a team that has yet to win a game in Three Rivers League competition this year.