WENATCHEE, Wash. – The Wenatchee AppleSox (25-20, 21-19) were cruising along, Friday, until a six error sixth inning gave the Bend Elks (25-15) a 7-4 lead that they would never relinquish.
Wenatchee scored early enough on Friday night to get out to a 4-0 lead at Vince Genna Stadium. One run in the second and three in the sixth gave the AppleSox and their starter, Ian Buckles, a sizable advantage.
The AppleSox, however, were not prepared to surrender six errors in the sixth. In the bottom half, following a single, walk and double, the AppleSox were still leading 4-1.
Multiple scenarios would follow, in which the AppleSox could’ve exited the inning with a 4-2 or 4-3 lead. When the chance came for the AppleSox to head to the seventh tied at four, a fly ball was dropped in the outfield. Two more errors and two more runs would follow, tabbing Ian Buckles with a loss.
The AppleSox were led by a 2-3 night for Nate Esposito. Kyle Vanderkin walked in all four of his at bats and made some instrumental defensive plays. He was one of few on the infield not bitten by the error bug.
Kevin Sheets and Louis Cohen shut the door on the AppleSox in the eighth and ninth innings. They are two of the Elks staples in the bullpen.
The AppleSox are now four games back of Bend in the wild card race, and two games behind Yakima in the WCL East.
The three game set continues, Saturday. Left-hander Calvin LeBrun will make his second start of the season with a 6:35 p.m. first pitch.
WEN 0 1 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 4 8 6
BEN 0 0 0 0 0 7 0 0 x 7 6 0
WP – Patrick McGuff
LP – Ian Buckles
S – Louis Cohen