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Black Bears Stumble Late, Fall to Bells

 

Game Story. Longview WA. July 14, 2013. After winning the first two games of the weekend series against the Bellingham Bells (17-15), the Cowlitz Black Bears (16-14) were unable to complete the sweep on Sunday night a StoryStory Field. The Bells used two big late innings to come away with an 11-5 victory in the final regular season matchup between the two clubs.

The Bells scored a pair in each of the first two innings to take an early 4-0 lead. As they have all series, the Black Bears responded. Paul Martinez led off the bottom of the second with a double. An Austin Grebeck walk and a Tanner Pinkston fielder's choice that failed to record an out loaded the bases. Taylor Bryant walked to forced home Martinez and a double play groundout off the bat of newcomer Dillon Ness scored Grebeck from third to cut the lead to 4-2.

Singles by Devyn Bolasky and Danny Recio and a Bells error loaded the bases for the Black Bears for the second straight inning. Austin Grebeck singled home Bolasky and a fielders choice by Tanner Pinkston tied the game at 4-4. With the bases still full, Ness was hit by a pitch to give the Black Bears their first lead of the game at 5-4.  Bolasky's single extended his hitting streak to 17 games.

Pitchers for both clubs settled down and the score remained the same until the Bells recorded four runs on four hits in the top of the seventh.  Bellingham added on three more in the ninth inning to put game out of reach.

With a 1-4 night, Kyle Knigge maintained his WCL lead in batting average, hitting an even .400.  Ryan Aguilar continued his streak of reaching base safely, currently at 27 game, with a walk to lead off the game, and his .526 on base percentage leads the League.  Bolasky, hitting .406 after the weekend, is three plate appearances shy of qualifying for League recognition in statistical categories.

After an off day, the Black Bears will visit the Walla Walla Sweets for the first time this season. The three game series will begin Tuesday night, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05.