WENATCHEE, Wash. – The Wenatchee AppleSox (19-15, 15-14) were led through the first six innings by Griffin Canning, before the Walla Walla Sweets (14-15) erupted for seven runs in the eighth inning to win, 7-5.
Canning was as dominant as he was on July 2nd, when he posted six scoreless innings on fireworks night. Friday’s contest was another six-inning, scoreless performance, for Canning. He also posted 10 strikeouts while giving up no walks.
In the seventh, Calvin LeBrun relieved Canning and tore through the Sweets one-two-three. In the eighth though, things uncharacteristically unraveled for LeBrun, who has been so strong in 2014.
All seven of Walla Walla’s runs came in the eighth. Six were scored off of LeBrun and another was plated off of Trenton Brooks.
The inning started with a single and Parker Osborne reached second on a passed ball. Back-to-back walks then loaded the bases and a fielder’s choice ground out scored Osborne to make the score 3-1. Another fielder’s choice, in which Nick Brooks elected to try to gun down a runner at the plate, resulted in a run for Walla Walla after the throw came up late.
From there, three Sweets singles kept things rolling and sprung to a 7-3 lead.
The AppleSox made it interesting in the bottom of the ninth as Joe Gillette came to the plate with the bases loaded and nobody out. He doubled down the right field line to score two and cut the Sweets lead to 7-5. He represented the tying run, in scoring position, with still zero outs.
Jay Flaa rebounded and struck out the last three Wenatchee batters in the ninth, to preserve the win for Walla Walla.
The AppleSox first three runs came in the third and seventh innings. Kyle Vanderkin, new to the AppleSox on Friday night, walked to lead off the inning and scored on a Sam Brown RBI single down the left field line.
Vanderkin would pick up his first AppleSox hit in the fifth inning and come around to score following another hit in the seventh and two singles from Tyler Frost and Sam Brown.
The series with Walla Walla concludes on Saturday with a 7:05 p.m. first pitch at Paul Thomas Sr. Field.
WW 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 7 0 7 9 4
WEN 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 0 2 5 13 0
WP – Dillon Dove
LP – Calvin LeBrun