by: THE OUTLOOK: DAVID BALL  - Centennials Nicholas Espinoza slides safely into third base during the first inning of the Eagles first-round win over Reynolds Green on Wednesday.

The Eagles bats come alive for a 12-run first inning in win over Reynolds

TROUTDALE - Centennial opened the rookie (ages 9-10) Little League district tournament with a bang Wednesday, putting up 12 runs in the first inning to get past Reynolds Green in a game cut short by the mercy rule.

The Eagles put 14 straight batters on base to open the game, highlighted by Justin Neill's RBI-double into the grass to bring in lead-off hitter Nicholas Espinoza with the game's first run.

Teammate Andres Montes-Lewis added a two-run double that crashed off the left-field fence to push the margin to 11-0 before Joshua Payne finished the scoring spurt with an RBI-single.

The Raiders ended the inning when pitcher Jordan Martin threw a strikeout, followed by Emari Minor catching a towering fly ball in center field.

Reynolds mustered a mini comeback in the early innings with Joshua Blegen scoring on a bases-loaded walk in the first inning and DeMain connecting for an RBI-single in the second.

But after being blanked in the second inning, Centennial put the game on ice with another big spurt in the third inning, sparked by Neill's lead-off double into the left-field corner. A Reynolds overthrow allowed him to scramble home.

Montes-Lewis had hits in each of his first three at-bats, coming around to score each time.

Also posting first-round victories was Clackamas, Mountain View and the Gresham Americans.

The tournament continues through the weekend at the Reynolds Little League complex with the championship set for 6 p.m. Thursday, July 5.

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