History repeating for Yaks?

May 19, 2012 by  

YVCC must travel same road as 2011 to qualify for NWAACC Tournament ||

YAKIMA, Wash. — For Yakima Valley, it’s deja vu all over again.

At least that’s what the Yaks are hoping for in light of their 5-1 loss to Walla Walla on Friday night in the East Region playoffs at Parker Field.

YVCC, which rode Jake Fife’s five-hit pitching to a 7-0 win over Treasure Valley in the playoffs’ opener Friday morning, must win three consecutive games for a return trip to the NWAACC Tournament.

Yakima Valley Community College's Cameron Padron slides into home during his team's game against Treasure Valley Community College on Friday, May 18, 2012. The Yaks won 7-0. (Sara Gettys/Yakima Herald-Republic)


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The Yaks will start with a noon rematch of their game with Treasure Valley, and if they win will meet Walla Walla again at 3 p.m. Should they survive those loser-out contests, they’ll play the Warriors again on Sunday for the region’s No. 1 tournament berth.

“Same scenario exactly as last year,” Yakima Valley coach Ken Wilson said. “Same teams, even. So we’ve been there. We just have to come out tomorrow and take care of business.”

At least YVCC won’t have to again face Drew Christina, a left-hander who didn’t allow a baserunner past second until the ninth inning, when a two-out walk and successive singles by Fife and Will Chavarria cost him a shutout.

When Christina, a Wa-Hi grad, walked No. 9 hitter Shawn Wardian to load the bases with newly crowned region MVP J.R. Weigel due up, Walla Walla head coach Dave Meliah brought in Connor Lawhead to get Weigel on a fly to right.

“We beat him (Christina) just last weekend, in fact,” Wilson said. “But give him credit. He threw well and we could never get any momentum going.”

Last year in Pasco, YVCC lost its second playoff game but won its next three for the program’s first NWAACC berth since 2000.

While Christina was holding the Yaks in check, scattering six hits through the first eight innings and finishing with seven strikeouts and five walks, he controlled their running game with a deft pickoff move with which he erased three baserunners — two in the first inning.

Wilson considered the move to be a balk, and pled his case to the umpires.

“Yeah,” he said, “I think it’s a balk. But when the umpire doesn’t think so and won’t call it, there’s nothing you can do. If that kid’s on my team, it’s a great move. If he isn’t, it’s not a great move.”

The Warriors’ offense, meanwhile, pecked away at YVCC starter Carson Miller and six relievers. No. 9 hitter Ryan James was especially productive with a sacrifice fly in the second, a run-scoring double in the he fourth and an RBI single in the sixth.

In the day’s first game, Fife continued his mound mastery. He struck out five, walked two and lowered his ERA to 1.91.

In Fife’s last three starts, he’s been absolutely lights out. He has pitched complete games each time out, surrendering 10 hits and only one run over 27 innings.

Cameron Padron and Kyle Mall had three hits apiece, with Padron driving in two runs. Leadoff man Weigel scored three times.

In the second game, Columbia Basin outhit Walla Walla 9-6 but the Warriors plated three runs in the fourth and three more in the ninth for a 7-5 victory.

Walla Walla 5, Y?akima Valley 1

Walla Walla 020 102 000 — 5 12 0
Yakima Valley 000 000 001 — 1 8 1

Christina, Lawhead (9) and Turner; Miller, Vetsch (3), Darling (5), Eck (6), Valley (8), Schmit (9), Askvig (9) and Chavarria.

YVCC highlights: Kyle Thompson 2-3; Jake Fife 2-4.

Yakima Valley 7, Treasure Valley 0

Treasure Valley 000 000 000 — 0 5 5
Yakima Valley 200 112 01x — 7 13 0

Lively, Olson (6), Curtis (7) and Reay; Fife and Chavarria.

YVCC highlights: Jake Fife 5 Ks, 2 BB; J.R. Weigel 3 runs, RBI; Kyle Thompson 2-4; Shawn Wardian 1-1, RBI; Cameron Padron 3-4, 2 RBI; Kyle Mall 3-5; Will Chavarria 2b.

Filed under All, Featured Stories, YVCC Baseball

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