A powerhouse program from the past met a powerhouse program from the present on the field Thursday night, and the boys from the present gave a little lesson in Baseball 101 in front of a large crowd at Aiken Field.
The Dalles-Wahtonka Eagles Indians - a Class 5A team out of the Intermountain League - paid a rare visit to the coast, where the weather is always perfect and so is the baseball. Or nearly so.
Astoria pitcher Matt Brause is hitting his postseason stride, as the senior right-hander allowed just three hits with eight strikeouts and one walk in a 9-0 shutout victory.
The milestone win was Astoria's 20th in a row, and came over a school that's won six state championships in the last 14 years (1993, '94, '97, '99, 2001, '02).
"It went pretty well," said Brause, who threw 97 pitches. "We played really great defense today - no errors, and we made all the plays. Tom (Jaworski) made a real nice play up the middle.
"I wasn't throwing real hard, but I hit my spots pretty well," he added. "It felt pretty good."
Astoria jumped on the board early, as Jordan Poyer led off the second inning with a bunt single, then scored on a single to center by Joey Dursse. An error on The Dalles and base hits by Mason Brause and Brent Culver helped Dursse score for a 2-0 lead.
The Eagles' pitching got a little wild after that, as starter Quinn Macnab walked five batters and hit two, with several wild pitches. Relief pitcher Corey Smith later plunked a third batter with the bases loaded.
The Fishermen finished with eight hits, and took advantage of five errors by The Dalles.
Jaworski scored on a passed ball in the third and Dursse came home on an error in the fourth. The Fishermen added three runs in the fifth, as Jaworski sprinted home on an errant throw by the catcher, while Nick Bredleau and Poyer scored on wild pitches.
"He had a crazy wind up," Matt Brause said of Macnab. "We just had to focus on the ball, and I think we adjusted pretty well."
Sam Johnson and Bredleau each had singles in the sixth, and Brad Sarpola brought in a run when he was hit by a pitch with the bases full. A sacrifice fly by Poyer scored Gabe Davis with the final run.
Culver and Poyer each had two base hits for the Fishermen, who host Banks today. Astoria is 20-3 overall, 13-0 in league, with two league games remaining.
The win streak is important, said Brause, to a certain extent.
Going undefeated in league play is "something we'd really like to do," he said. "I won't lie - winning is pretty nice. But I don't think our win streak is the most important thing, until we get to the playoffs.
"We'll get some good competition in the next week or so (Astoria plays Marist Tuesday, at Linfield College), so it will be nice to see how we do against them."
Scappoose 13, Seaside 7
In other Cowapa League action Thursday, Scappoose rallied for a 13-7 win over Seaside. The Indians and Gulls are now tied in the league standings at 7-6, one game behind Yamhill-Carlton (8-5).
Seaside plays at Yamhill-Carlton today and returns to Scappoose Monday.
Bobek, Harber win titles
SCAPPOOSE - After just one day of competition in the Cowapa League Championships, the Astoria girls and Seaside boys track teams could both be on their way to scoring big points at the state meet.
The Cowapa championships opened Thursday at Scappoose with preliminaries in most events, coupled with nine finals.
On the girls' side, the Fishermen already have two league champions, as sophomore Laura Bobek won the shot put with a personal best throw of 42 feet, 11 1/2 inches, and sophomore Charlene Harber broke her personal best (18-03/4) by soaring 18-31/2 to win the long jump. Her winning jump also gave her a new meet record and Astoria school record.
The meet concludes today at Scappoose, with Bobek and Harber both heavy favorites to win the discus and triple jump, respectively.
Astoria qualified two other athletes for the state meet, next week in Eugene.
Jamie Coggins was second in the shot put (39-4 1/4) and K.J. Carr placed second in the javelin (PR 118-2 on her last throw). Seaside's Patricia Doyle took second to qualify for state in the 3,000 meters (11 minutes, 12 seconds). Astoria freshman Kamila Swerdloff was fourth in a PR 11:43.35.
The Seaside boys are in a good position to take the district crown, as Kai Watts (142-11) and Bjorn McCord (136-3) finished first and second in the discus finals. Elsewhere, Justin Krieger (200 meters) and Dennis Olstedt (both hurdle events) had top times in their preliminary races.
The Astoria boys qualified two athletes for state, as Chris Meyer cleared 6-1 to win the high jump, and Justin Tikkala (20-5 1/2) took second in the long jump.