Bend starts fast to down Gophers in semis
Gresham falls into a 'must-win' game Thursday against LaGrande
State Little League tournament
PORTLAND The Gresham all-stars struggled to get their bats going Tuesday night and dropped their first game at the Little League state tournament 9-4 to Bend North.
The Gophers pulled even 2-2 in the second inning with homers by Keegan Hunt and Jaden Nehler. The team almost pulled ahead when Reece McKenzie launched a long ball into left field only to see it gloved at the warning track.
Bend broke the game open with a five-run spurt in the fourth inning to build a 9-2 lead.
The Gophers blanked Bend over the final two innings, but could only push across two runs down the stretch.
Gresham plays LaGrande in an elimination game at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at Alpenrose Dairy, needing a win to force a rematch with Bend in the title series Friday night.
Look for expanded game coverage in our Friday, July 25, print edition.
View a photo gallery from Tuesdays semifinal game at