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Jesuit hammers Viks

BASEBALL: Forest Grove gives up two big innings in an 11-2 loss to Jesuit
by: Chase Allgood, Jesuit’s Tim David leads off third base as Forest Grove sophomore Taylor Vandecouvering delivers a pitch.

Baseball is a game of nuances, and right now Forest Grove is struggling with its intricacies.

The Vikings (2-9) played five innings of good baseball and two innings of bad baseball last Thursday against Jesuit. Those two bad innings resulted in 11 Jesuit runs - more than enough to pave the way for an 11-2 non-conference win.

'Right now we're not helping ourselves out,' said Forest Grove head coach Joe Baumgartner. 'We're walking too many hitters and making too many errors in the field.'

Against Jesuit, Forest Grove pitchers issued six walks and hit three batters, while the Vikings' defense committed four errors.

Those miscues opened the door for two big Jesuit innings. The Crusaders scored four runs in the top of the first, then tacked on seven more in the fifth.

'In baseball, you've got to stay out of big innings and we're not doing that,' Baumgartner said. 'The pitchers feel like they've got to strike guys out because the fielders aren't helping, and the fielders are sitting back waiting for strikeouts instead of being ready for the ball to be put in play. It's sort of a vicious cycle.'

Kyle Swaja, Joey Flanery, Dylan Sullivan and Taylor Vandecouvering all pitched at least one inning against Jesuit. The Crusaders countered with ace Alex Keudell, who threw three hitless innings before giving way to Joe Supple. Michael Lowe also pitched for Jesuit, and the staff combined to limit Forest Grove to two hits on the afternoon.

Forest Grove has a three-game series against Tigard this week. The Viks will play at home today.