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Pepsi coach Justin O’Byrne likes the direction his team is heading going into the final two weeks of the regular season.

The Pepsi Bottlecaps got their bats warmed up in the second game, pounding out 15 hits in a 15-2 victory over South Medford in five innings to complete a sweep in a nonleague doubleheader on Thursday night at Bill Gray Stadium at Legion Field.

Pepsi (9-10 overall) overcame a four-run deficit to win the opener, 6-4.

“You want to be trending upward at this point of the season and we’ve been doing that the last two weeks,” Pepsi coach Justin O’Byrne said. “We’re getting great pitching performances. The coaching staff is pleased with where the kids are heading.”

Austin Takahashi and Sebastian Watson combined on a five-hitter in the second game. Takahashi, who will be a freshman at Camas Valley High School, picked up the decision. The right-hander allowed two hits and no runs in four innings of work, striking out eight and walking one.

“He’s really young, really raw,” O’Byrne said of Takahashi. “He did a really good job of settling in. Getting eight strikeouts is real productive.”

The Bottlecaps provided him with ample run support at the plate, opening with seven runs in the bottom of the first inning and adding six more in the second. Pepsi stroked five hits with two outs and capitalized on one walk and one hit batter in the first, with Dakota Percell delivering an RBI single and Knox Hubbard contributing a two-run single.

Sebastian Watson went 3-for-3 with three RBIs for the Bottlecaps. Logan Klopfenstein was 3-for-4 with two RBIs, Trevor Muir was 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs, Blake Watson went 2-for-3 with two runs and Hubbard finished 2-for-2 with two RBIs.

Pepsi trailed 4-0 in the opener heading into the bottom of the fourth, but responded with four runs in the bottom half to tie it. The Bottlecaps took the lead for good with two more runs in the fifth.

Klopfenstein had an RBI single to get Pepsi within 4-3, then came home when Blake Watson was hit by a pitch. Caden Smith knocked in a run on a fielder’s choice and error to put Pepsi ahead in the fifth.

“The bottom of the lineup (Percell, Hubbard and Smith) did a good job getting on base,” O’Byrne said.

Klopfenstein went the distance on the mound, scattering nine hits. He allowed two earned runs with five strikeouts and one walk.

“He was good,” O’Byrne said. “He struggled a bit in the early innings, but was really efficient in the last three and was able to finish the game.”

Klopfenstein had two of Pepsi’s five hits in the contest, going 2-for-4 with two RBIs.

The Bottlecaps are off this weekend before returning to Area 4 North play on Monday, visiting Grants Pass in a doubleheader. Pepsi will host league-leading North Coos Tuesday in a twin bill.

First Game

S. Medford 002 200 0 — 4 9 1

Pepsi 000 420 x — 6 5 2

Douglas, Sewell (4) and Wallace; Klopfenstein and Paul. WP — Klopfenstein. LP — Douglas. 2B — Miller (SM).

Second Game

S. Medford 000 02 — 2 5 3

Pepsi 760 2x — 15 15 1

Mason, Davis (3) and Wallace; Takahashi, S. Watson (5) and Paul, Hubbard (5). WP — Takahashi. LP — Mason. 2B — Muir (P).

Tom Eggers can be reached at teggers@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4220.

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Sports Editor

Tom Eggers is the sports editor for The News-Review. He can be reached at teggers@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4220.

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