Boxers top nationally-ranked Linfield
Pacific rallies for a 7-6, come-from-behind victory over No. 2 Linfield on Sunday to complete a rare series win
Jared Van Hoon's two-out, bases loaded single up the middle capped an incredible late-inning rally on Sunday as Pacific rebounded from four runs down to stun No. 2 ranked Linfield, 7-6, in Northwest Conference baseball action at Chuck Bafaro Stadium.
Van Hoon stepped to the plate with two outs after Linfield relievers Spencer Crepeaux and Casey Cameron loaded the bases on two walks and a line single by Chad Fahey. Van Hoon connected on a 1-1 pitch that bounced just out of the reach of Linfield shortstop Kenny Johnson for a base hit.
Anson Arakaki easily scored the tying run from third, and pinch runner Donnie Bradley was waved home from second and just got around the outstretched arm of Linfield catcher Kyle Chamberlain on a play at the plate to score the game-winning run.
The stunning win lifted Pacific to 5-8 overall (2-1 NWC), and marked the first time that the Boxers have taken a series from Linfield since 2001. Linfield, ranked No. 2 in the latest D3Baseball.com/NCBWA Division III poll, dropped to 7-3 (4-2 NWC). It is the first time the Wildcats have lost a series since dropping three of four games to George Fox in 2009.
Van Hoon led the Boxers by going 3-for-5 with three RBIs and a run scored. He also earned the win in relief as he retired the Wildcats in order in the top of the ninth.
Sunday's dramatic, come-from-behind victory capped a stellar weekend for the Boxers, who beat Linfield 7-1 in the series opener on Saturday behind a complete game five-hitter from ace Rob Dittrick, who was named NWC Pitcher of the Week for his dominating performance.
Dittrick allowed one run with five strikeouts in his first complete game of the season. The junior didn't allow more than four batters to the plate in any of the first eight innings, with his only run allowed coming on a solo home run by Kramer Lindell in the ninth.
Fahey had three hits to lead the Boxers in Saturday's victory, while Bradley went 2-for-4 with a pair of two-run singles. Bradley keyed a two-out rally for the Boxers in the second inning, and he also jump-started Pacific's five-run sixth inning.
Linfield got back into its offensive groove in the nightcap, using a three-run fourth inning to build the momentum needed for a 6-3 win.
Tim Wilson had three hits to lead the Wildcats while Kevin Allan and Kyle Chamberlain each had two hits and two RBIs.
Pacific will have little time to enjoy the series win over Linfield with another tough opponent awaiting the Boxers this weekend. Pacific travels to George Fox for a three-game NWC series on Saturday and Sunday.