Bend jumped out to a 3-0 lead before Cowlitz came to bat on Saturday night, and held off the Black Bears' comeback attempt, taking the third game of the series by a 5-4 score.
Bend scored three runs on three hits and three walks in the top of the first inning. Scott Serigstad came on in relief of starter Zebastian Valenzuela, and stranded the bases full of Elks buy inducing an inning ending fly out.
Serigstad held the Elks scoreless for the next four innings, allowing no runs on two hits, striking out two in his longest outing of the season. He received some defensive assistance, most notably on a spectacular play by Kyle Hunt in deep short to rob Bend's Zach Close of a base hit to end the fifth.
In the meantime, the Black Bears went about the business of clawing back into the game. In the fourth inning, an Brennan Salgado single scored Daniel Orr, who had singled earlier in the inning. An inning later, Corey VanDomelen singled, stole second, and later scored on a Joey Greco sacrifice fly.
Bend restored the lead to three with two runs in the top of the seventh, but the Black Bears were not done. In the bottom of the seventh, Hunt scalded a ball in the right center field gap, and was thinking triple from the crack of the bat. The head first slide inspired the crowd and the Black Bears. VanDomlen's third hit of the night scored Hunt to make the score 5-3.
In the ninth, Van Domelen and Taylor Bryant coaxed walks, and were sacrificed into scoring position by Greco. Daniel Orr grounded out to score Van Domelen and advance Bryant to third, but the game ended with Bryant on third, giving Bend the 5-4 win.
Conor Cuse pitched one and one-third innings, allowing two runs on two hits while striking out one, and Henry Omana continued his strong summer, pitching pitching two and two-thirds innings, allowing only one hit and no runs, while striking out one.
Offensively, VanDomelen raised hit team leading batting average to .353 with a three-hit night, and Brennan Salgado added two hits.
The Black Bears will take a two day break for the WCL All Star game in Klamth Falls, Oregon. Be sure to follow the action Monday night at 6:35 as Corey VanDomelen, Shane Bieber, Billy Sahlinger, and Joe Reta join other stars in the league for this special night.
The Bears will return to Story Field on Tuesday night for the first of three games against the Victoria Harbour Cats with first pitch at 6:35. The Black Bears welcome all friends and visitors from the Port of Longview for the Port of Longview Night at Story Field. Tuesday is also Fiesta Bonita $2 Tuesday, with $2 General Admission tickets, $2 hot dogs, $2 soda and $2 canned beer.