Saturday’s 2A Baseball: Bearcats Out-Hit, but Can’t Outscore, Wildcats in Regional Opener
STYMIED: W.F. West Tallies Nine Hits in 3-2 Loss to Archbishop Murphy to End Three-Year State Tourney Streak
By Aaron VanTuyl
It started off a bit awkwardly for the Bearcats and didn’t get much better over the next six innings.
And, by the time the dust settled Saturday at Ed Wheeler Field, Archbishop Murphy had scratched and clawed its way to a 3-2 win, knocking W.F. West out of the 2A regional playoffs.
“They took advantage of every free thing we gave them,” W.F. West coach Bryan Bullock said of the WesCo champion Wildcats, “whether it be a walk, or an error, or a wild pitch or a passed ball, they just kept putting pressure on us.”
The Bearcats finished the season with a 21-3 record and miss the final four portion of the State 2A tournament in Yakima for the first time since 2015.
“Like I told the kids, the feeling they have right now is because of where the program is,” Bullock said. “The seniors, where they’re leaving it is making it to the state tournament and not making it to Yakima feels like a failure, and that’s just a tribute to how much success we’ve had.”
And, at least in the scorebook, that success continued Saturday. The Bearcats racked up nine hits, including six over the first two innings, and had every spot in the lineup reach base at least once. They also stranded six runners in the first three innings, left runners on second and third in the first two frames, and ran themselves out of a bases-loaded, one-out situation in the second with a misadventure on the basepaths.
It all added up to Archbishop Murphy starter Cole Calnon needing just 57 pitches to get through six innings despite giving up nine hits.
Calnon, the Wildcats’ senior ace, had walked just six batters all season heading into Saturday’s game.
“We knew he was a strike-thrower … so our plan was to attack,” Bullock said. “I thought we did a really good job. We had nine hits and we had guys on base every inning. We just couldn’t get that string of hits to get us the lead.”
The Wildcats, on the other hand, turned a leadoff error in the first inning into a run with a delayed steal of home, then got an RBI single from Calnon for a 2-1 lead. They pushed across another run in the second on a two-out double from Derek Trobough, which proved to be just enough offense to extend their season.
Max Taylor hit an RBI double in the first inning and Josiah Johnson hit an RBI double off the left-field wall in the fourth to account for the Bearcats’ scoring. Lane Douglass went 2 for 3 and Taylor and Brock Jones were each 2 for 4.
Jones, W.F. West’s University of Washington-bound ace, tossed the first four innings, striking out six with four walks, two hits and an earned run.
“He didn’t have quite his best stuff today, and he knew it,” Bullock said, “but he really battled and competed to give us a chance.”
Calnon struck out three without a walk, giving up one earned run, in six innings of work. Trobough took over in the seventh and put the first two Bearcats to the plate on with a walk and a hit batter before getting a pop fly and two strikeouts to end the game.
It was the final game for W.F. West seniors Jones, Douglass, Cyrus Bunker, Daniel Fagerness and Leandre Gaines.
WILDCATS 3, BEARCATS 2
W.F. West 100 100 0 — 2 9 1
Arch. Murphy 210 000 X — 3 3 2
Batteries: W.F. West — Brock Jones, Daniel Fagerness (5) and Lane Douglass; Archbishop Murphy — Cole Calnon, Derek Trobough (7) and Joe Ennis