Evergreen lefty Tom Pollard proved his two-hit, 12-strikeout win over Patrick Henry was no fluke as he went one-up, throwing a one-hitter and fanning 14 Swanton Bulldogs in a 3-0 ACME season ending win last Tuesday on the road.
Pollard struck out at least two Bulldogs in every inning with the exception of the fifth and allowed the only Bulldog hit, Roman Epley’s two-out single, in the first inning.
Nothing came of that knock as Collin Loeffler threw out Epley at second trying to stretch his single down the left field line into two.
The rest of the way, Pollard walked two and no Swanton runner advanced past first base.
The Vikes got all the offense they needed in the first inning.
Swanton starter Hunter Mix issued a leadoff walk to Mason Henricks and Adam Baumgartner followed with a sharp single to right to put runners on first and second.
Mix almost escaped the inning by getting a pop-up and lineout, but RJ Schunk came through with a two-out, two-run double to right center to give Evergreen a 2-0 lead.
Mix and reliever Austin Luce were nearly as effective as Pollard, giving up only Jack Krispin’s one-out single in the sixth, until the seventh inning.
Loeffler battled for a leadoff walk, then Zack Lumbrezer bunted for a hit and a subsequent throwing error on the play gave Evergreen runners at second and third.
An intentional walk loaded the bases with no one out.
Luce got Henricks on a pop-up but Baumgartner lined his second hit into left center to score a run to make it 3-0.
However, some shoddy base running by the Vikings helped Swanton get out of the jam when on the hit, the trailing runner from first erroneously continued to third and was caught in a rundown. The runner who was occupying third was thrown out at the plate.
However, Pollard made quick work in a 1-2-3 seventh to seal the win.
Evergreen now goes to the ACME tournament, beginning this Thursday at Ottawa Hills where they will play the Green Bears in the first round.
Reach Joe Blystone at firstname.lastname@example.org