WARRENTON — The Warrenton Warriors closed out the home portion of their summer schedule with a doubleheader split Saturday afternoon against Hoquiam, in Junior Baseball action at Huddleston Field.
Three Hoquiam pitchers combined to throw a no-hitter in Game 1, as the Grizzlies posted a 5-1 victory.
Warrenton had four hits in Game 2, and also took advantage of five walks and four hit batters in a 4-3 win.
“Offensively, we looked like a team that spent the last week at a football camp,” said Warrenton coach Lennie Wolfe, whose team advances to the Junior Baseball state tournament later this week.
Many of Wolfe’s players took part in a football camp at Eastern Oregon University in Pendleton for the better part of last week.
“They left early Monday and got back late Thursday, so they didn’t have a lot of time for baseball,” he said. “And Hoquiam’s a good team. We continued our theme of playing good competition this summer. Given all that, I thought played OK. We pitched well and only gave up one earned run in each game.”
In Saturday’s opener, Hoquiam pitchers Alex Reyes, Junior Ensminger and Camden Templer combined on a no-hitter, striking out seven with four walks and three hit batters. The Grizzlies hit four more batters in Game 2.
Offensively, Hoquiam wasn’t getting much off Warrenton starter Devin Jackson, who allowed five hits with three walks and five strikeouts. Gabe Breitmeyer pitched the seventh for the Warriors.
The Grizzlies scored single runs in the second and third innings, highlighted by a pair of doubles.
Hoquiam tacked on two runs in the fifth, on an infield single and three Warrenton errors.
The Warriors finally scored in the sixth inning, as Jake Morrow reached on a walk, and advanced to third on two balk calls. He scored on a sacrifice bunt by Ryan Hoagland.
Hoquiam’s Jonathan Escoffon had a leadoff double in the seventh, and later scored for a four-run lead.
In Game 2, the Warriors trailed 1-0 after a half-inning before Morrow had Warrenton’s first big hit of the day, a two-run homer to left-center field for a 2-1 lead.
Warrenton starter Austin Little kept the Grizzlies scoreless over the second, third and fourth innings, while the Warriors tacked on a run in the bottom of the fourth when Duane Falls drew a walk, advanced to third on a grounder and a sacrifice bunt, then scored on a wild pitch.
The Grizzlies answered with single runs in the fifth and sixth to send the teams to the seventh, tied 3-3.
Little retired Hoquiam in order in the top of the inning, and Warrenton’s Dylon Atwood was hit by a pitch to start the bottom of the seventh.
Little reached on a bunt single, and after a pitching change and an out, Morrow singled to load the bases.
Falls followed with a fly ball to center, deep enough to score Atwood with the game-winning run.
Morrow had three of Warrenton’s four hits.
Now it’s on to the state tournament for the Warriors, one of eight teams who will compete for a state title Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Crescent Valley High School in Corvallis.
The first round includes West Salem vs. Silverton and Summit vs. Corvallis.
Warrenton will face West Albany in a first-round game at 2:30 p.m. Friday. The winner will play the winner of Churchill vs. Crescent Valley at 5 p.m. Saturday. The losers of each game will play Saturday at 9:30 a.m.