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Benson closes out Gresham for first win of season

Pitcher Tito Espinoza strikes out the final batter with two runners on base


by: PAMPLIN MEDIA GROUP: DAVID BALL - Benson sophomore Tito Espinoza fires toward the plate during Wednesdays 3-2 win at Gresham. The game marked his first varsity action.

GRESHAM — Benson High’s baseball team came through in crunch time Wednesday to score a 3-2 win at Gresham — it’s first win of the young season.

The Techsters scored all three of their runs on sacrifices with the go-ahead one coming in the fifth inning when Joey Wallberg slapped a ground ball to second base that brought Mario Pablo across the plate.

Clinging to the slim lead, the game was in the hands of Benson’s sophomore pitcher Tito Espinoza, who was making his first varsity appearance on the mound.

The Gophers put runners on in each of the last three innings, but none got past second base.

“We fought until the end and didn’t give up,” Benson coach Adam Cohen said. “This was a big game against a 6A school, and the kids were excited.”

Center fielder Alan Mesa ended a threat in the sixth inning when he made a catch on the run, the ball hitting his glove for the final out as Gresham’s base runner rounded third base.

The Gophers would put two runners on in the seventh inning, but Espinoza finished the game by striking out the next batter looking.

“The pressure was high, but I just needed to relax and stay calm,” he said. “It’s a great feeling to get the W.”

View a photo gallery of the game at …

http://daveball.exposuremanager.com/g/march13_benson-gresham_baseball