Wildcats lapse against Bearcats


Cale Byers

Cason Cunningham, ‘19, winding up his pitch in game one of the Willamette Bearcats series with Alec Cook, ‘19, on first base.

Alex Jensen and Athena Benjamin

A sunny weekend at the Roy Hesler field did not shine bright for the Wildcats. The Willamette Bearcats lead the conference 6-2 after walking away from this past weekend series 2-1.

“Our goal is to turn the season around. We’re in a hole and we have to dig ourselves out of it,” Senior Matt McDonald said about the losses this weekend.

Game one the Bearcats put six runs on the board to the Wildcats one. Senior pitcher Cason Cunningham cruised through the first three innings. But in the fourth inning the Bearcats Justin Scanlon homers to left field allowing an RBI double. 

Cunningham was relieved by McDonald after the inning. 

In the sixth the Bearcats put another two runs on the board from another RBI double. 

The Wildcats earned their only run for the game in the bottom of the sixth when Tanner Earhart singled allowing senior Cameron Fox to score.

In the seventh inning the Bearcats hit in two more runs bringing it to the game’s final score. 

Linfield rotated between four pitchers each lasting around a single inning, except Cunningham who stayed in till the fifth.  

Game two, the Wildcats turned the table. A hit by junior Ben Wagner bringing sophomore Wyatt Smith home put the ‘Cats up on the board first. 

The Bearcats answered back with an RBI single in the fifth and eighth inning. It brought the board to 2-1.

The Wildcats did not let the score sit for long. In the bottom of the eighth inning Smith singled through the left field allowing Fox and junior Brian Cromwell to tie the game 3-3. Then an RBI triple from junior Levi Horner-Villa bringing himself, Zach Cokos, and Smith catapult

the ‘Cats to 6-3.

Colton Meyer, who pitched seven of the nine innings, only allowed five hits and three runs. Luckily, the Bearcats did not jump on the opportunity, but Meyer also gave up seven walks.

In Game three an infield mistake brought a cloud over the ‘Cats heads. Frustration loomed after an error by pitcher Waldichuk in the sixth inning led to two unearned runs. 

Willamette continued tacking runs on the scoreboard almost every inning, finalizing this game at 4-14, Willamette.

The coaching staff put out seven different pitchers during this game, none of which played a strong game. There were nine hits, seven walks, two wild pitches, and three hits by pitches.

“As a team, I feel we need to play more relaxed and not press as much as we are right now. And just have fun playing the game we grew up loving,” Thomas said.

Next, the Wildcats play the second-ranked in conference George Fox Bruins 11 a.m., Saturday and Sunday in Newberg.