ILWACO — The Ilwaco Fishermen (5-7) ended their home regular season by clobbering the Ocosta Wildcats (3-3) 13-7 on Friday, April 16 in Long Beach.
After starting the season 1-3, Ilwaco is now anticipating a potential district playoff invitation after winning their last three games, including a 10-3 victory over Warrenton on Wednesday.
The Wildcats scored first, jumping out to a 1-0 lead before the Fishermen answered with three runs of their own in the opening frame, highlighted by a two-run blast by Alex Hillard.
Ilwaco pitcher Jacob Rogers showed poise in the second inning, and retired the side with just one hit. Ilwaco continued to add to their lead in the second inning, which swelled to 5-1 after a two-RBI double off the centerfield fence by Jackson Wilkin.
In the third inning, Ocosta capitalized on a couple of Ilwaco errors, cutting the lead to 5-4.
In the fourth inning, Ocosta attempted to slow the Ilwaco lineup with a new pitcher and a heavy dose of curveballs. The Fishermen pushed one run across in the inning when Ryan Morris stole home on a passed ball, making the score 6-4.
The Wildcats loaded the bases in fourth inning, but Fishermen third baseman Jackson Wilkin bailed his team out by making a miraculous snag on a line-drive for the final out, stranding three Ocosta runners. Meanwhile, Ilwaco continued to add to their lead, which included a two-RBI shot to right-center by Kyle Moriss, extending the lead to 8-4.
The score held until the fifth inning, when Ilwaco added two more runs making the score 10-4.
And that’s when things got a little wild. In the top of the sixth inning, Ocosta began to piece together a two-out rally, spurred in part by a controversial reversed call that would have meant a scoreless inning for the Wildcats.
A Wildcat runner was initially called out at third after being caught in a rundown, which would have been the final out of the inning. The Ilwaco team had returned to their dugout ready to bat when the call was reversed and a balk was called on the Ilwaco pitcher, which returned the runners to base and gave new life to Wildcat team.
Ocosta pushed three runs across, making the score 10-7.
Despite the momentum shift, Ilwaco responded aggressively with their next at bat by loading the bases before a Kaemon Sawa double and a Dylan Simonson single drove three runs in for a comfortable 13-7 Fishermen lead going into the final frame.
An Ocosta comeback fizzled, ending with a 13-7 Ilwaco victory.