CORVALLIS — The Walla Walla Bears used a strong first inning to pull off a 5-2 win over the Roseburg Dr. Stewart’s on Saturday at the Mickey Riley Star-Spangled Tournament in Corvallis.
Walla Walla (21-9-3) will play for third place on Sunday, while the Docs (16-11) will play for fifth.
Less than a day after what head coach Jeremiah Robbins described as probably the team’s worst loss, the Docs gave up three runs to Walla Walla in the first and the Bears never trailed.
Despite the early deficit, Robbins felt his team made strides in getting better.
“After last night, (we) very easily could have come out flat today and just rolled over and we didn’t do that,” Robbins said. “You take away the first inning and that’s a really good ball game by our guys.”
Garrett Zeimet gave up three straight singles to start the game and each of the Walla Walla batters would eventually come around to score.
The Bears made it 4-0 in the second inning on an RBI double by Kyren Morris. Morris went 3-for-3 in the game and tacked on Walla Walla’s final run with a two-out RBI single in the fourth to make it 5-0.
The Docs finally got on the scoreboard in the sixth inning against relief pitcher Nathan Treadway. A two-out double by KC Pettibone put two runners in scoring position and Jace Stoffal brought them both home with a single up the middle.
That would be all that the Docs could manage against the Walla Walla pitching staff. Zander Norris came in and closed the game with a 1-2-3 seventh. He earned his first save of the season, striking out two.
“We’re never satisfied with a loss,” Robbins said, “...but there were some things that we made some strides as a team to correct, not only in the dugout but out in the field.”
Kobe Morris started for the Bears and pitched five shutout innings. He allowed just three hits and struck out four to earn his first win of the year.
Both Kobe Morris and Norris used a sidearm motion that coach Robbins admitted probably threw his guys off at the plate.
Dr. Stewart’s will finish the Mickey Riley Star-Spangled Tournament against the Mid-Coast Dungies from Newport on Sunday. The Dungies have gone 0-3 in the tournament, but will face the Docs in the fifth place game to accommodate travel schedules for other teams.
First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. from Gene Hansen Stadium at Taylor Field in Corvallis.
Dr.Stewart’s 000 002 0 — 2 6 1
Walla Walla 310 100 x — 5 7 0
Zeimet, Borschowa (4) and Guasteferro; Kobe Morris, Treadway (6), Norris (7) and Richmond. WP — Kobe Morris (1-0). LP — Zeimet (0-2). Sv — Norris (1). 2B — Pettibone (DS), Kyren Morris (W).