Lewis-Clark State wins series opener with Owls 6-1
KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. – Bobby Tannehill and Connor Moore hit their first home runs of the year and Michael Noteware struck out nine batters to help the No. 9-ranked Lewis-Clark State College baseball team knock off Oregon Tech 6-1 on Saturday at Kiger Stadium.
Tannehill’s blast was a three-run shot that came with two outs in the fifth inning and helped put the game out of reach.
“It was the hit of the game,” said LCSC head coach Gary Picone. “With two strikes he got a pitch up and hit it off the scoreboard. That was a good swing.”
The long ball gave Noteware, a junior from Tujunga, Calif., more than enough room to work with. The right-hander surrendered just one walk and seven hits over eight innings to improve to 7-1 on the year. He has not allowed more than two runs in any of his six starts this season, and leads the team with a 1.91 ERA.
“They’re not a bad hitting team,” Picone said about Oregon Tech. “I thought Noteware pitched well. The wind blows out, and it’s the kind of park where if you make a mistake you can get hurt. So I thought his pitching performance to hold them to a single run was good.”
The Warriors were outhit 10-8 on the day, but came up with the bigger blasts including a solo bomb by Moore in the third. The senior also had an RBI double to put the team on the board in the first.
The win lifts the Warriors to 19-5 in NAIA West play and 30-9 overall. The Owls fall to 8-13 in league play and 15-25 overall. The four-game series will continue with a doubleheader starting at 11 a.m. on Sunday, followed by a single game on Monday at 11 a.m.
With senior Trent Bridges out for at least a couple of weeks because of a fractured ring finger on his throwing hand, the Warriors are in need of someone to fill in defensively over the weekend and they seem to have found their man in junior Mitchell Wilhite.
“He (Wilhite) came to the park today and we told him he was playing shortstop,” said Picone. “He did good at short. I think he had six chances and he handled them all.”
Wilhite, who is listed as a utility player and has already seen time at second base and pitcher, fielded three 6-3 ground outs, caught one line drive, and helped turn a 6-4-3 double play in the fifth and in the eighth.
The injury to Bridges happened while fielding groundballs during practice earlier this week. He is just one of a number of Warriors currently dealing with an injury. Position players Alfonso Casillas (quadriceps) and Kyle Knigge (hip flexor) are both out for at least this series, pitcher Carsen Nylund is up against an indefinite timeline because of back issues, and pitcher Cody Garner is out for the year with a torn labrum.