Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Legion (31-9) settles for third place at state

Wranglers win twice at Nampa’s Rodeo Park

     A memorable summer season has wrapped up for the Wood River American Legion baseball team with a third-place finish in the eight-team State “A” tournament held Thursday through Sunday on Nampa’s Rodeo Park diamond.

     Coach Lars Hovey’s Wood River squad (31-9, 9-3 home, 22-6 away) won its first two games Thursday and Friday 8-1 and 7-2 over Mountain View Toros (21-18)  and Moscow Blue Devils (27-22), both at Rodeo Park.

     Saturday evening, the Wranglers ran into a buzzsaw and dropped a 21-1 five-inning decision to eventual state champ Pocatello Razorbacks. Pocatello scored 17 runs in the second inning and breezed to the run-rule win sending Wood River to the loser bracket.

     The result in the double elimination format meant that Wood River had to turn around 12 hours later and play a loser-out semi-final contest against the Moscow Blue Devils.

     Moscow was riding high after its 8-5 win Saturday that eliminated the defending state champ/host Nampa Braves.

     It didn’t go well for Wood River Sunday morning. Moscow handed the Wranglers a 7-2 loss. The Blue Devils out-hit Wood River 11-6 and scored runs in their first five at-bats.

     Later Sunday, last year’s state runner-up Pocatello (52-1) completed a remarkable season with its first-ever state championship 6-5 over Moscow.

     The only Razorback loss snapping a 35-game winning streak was by an 11-1 score to Wood River July 8 in Hailey. Pocatello won its final 17 games including four by a cumulative 33-7 margin at state. For the season, the Razorbacks outscored their opponents 526-111.

     The third-place state finish equaled the best-ever result for a Wood River Legion team at the State “A” tournament. It was the fifth state tournament trip for Wood River in the program’s 40 years. Wood River also finished third at the 2007 state tournament in Hailey.

     Finishing as Wood River’s top pitcher was Finn Isaacson with an 8-1 record including a complete-game win over Moscow at state and appearances in three of the four state games.

     In Friday’s 7-1 win, Isaacson (7 innings, 4 hits, 1 earned run, 2 BB, 6 K) held the Blue Devils scoreless in the first four frames and benefited from a four-run Wranglers third. Wood River had no errors.

     Top batters in the first game against Moscow were Brandon Benson (2 hits, double), Isaacson (3 runs), Cameron Benson (2 RBI, double) and Cade Schott (2 hits, 2 RBI). Chipping in with hits were Nelson Cantrell, Owen Gifford and Nic Tidwell.

     Top season hitters were catcher Cameron Benson .523 with 48 RBI and on-base/slugging percentages of .597 and .879, and Isaacson .462 with 36 RBI. Third baseman Brandon Benson played in the most games, 39, and hit .444 with 52 runs scored, .730 slugging percentage, 37 RBI, 20 HBP and 21 stolen bases.


Babe Ruth U14s at Whitefish

     Wood River’s U-14 boys were the sole Idaho representative at the Babe Ruth League Pacific Northwest Regional tournament July 30-Aug. 2 at Whitefish and Columbia Falls, Mt.

     The Wood River boys went 1-3 in their four games, winning their finale 8-4 over Riverton, Wyo. on Friday, Aug. 1. The Inland Select squad from northern Washington won the 10-team baseball tournament and earned a trip to the World Series in Ocala, Fla.

     Here are the scores:

     Wednesday, July 30: Klamath Falls (Southern Oregon) 15-2 over Riverton (Wyo.); West Linn (Northern Oregon) 9-1 over Moses Lake (Northern Washington); Kalispell (Mt.) 3-1 over Wood River; host Glacier (Mt.) 5-3 over Twin Cities (Southern Washington); Inland Select (Northern Washington) 8-6 over Klamath Falls (Southern Oregon); Moses Lake (Northern Washington) 10-9 over Calgary (Alberta); West Linn (Northern Oregon) 11-4 over Glacier (Mt.); and
Kalispell (Mt.) 11-0 over Riverton (Wyo).

     Thursday, July 31: West Linn (Northern Oregon) 8-1 over Calgary (Alberta); Riverton (Wyoming) 2-1 over Inland Select (Northern Washington);
Twin Cities (Southern Washington) 11-4 over Moses Lake (Northern Washington); Klamath Falls (Southern Oregon) 12-0 over Wood River; Inland Select (Northern Washington) 12-0 over Kalispell (Mt.); Glacier (Mt.) 13-0 over Calgary (Alberta).

     Friday, Aug. 1: West Linn (Northern Oregon) 8-1 over Calgary (Alberta); Inland Select (Northern Washington) 9-5 over Wood River; Glacier (Mt.) 11-10 over Moses Lake (Northern Washington); Kalispell (Mt.) 15-12 over Klamath Falls (Southern Oregon); Wood River 8-4 over Riverton (Wyo.); and Twin Cities (Southern Washington) 6-5 over West Linn (Northern Oregon).

     Saturday, Aug. 2: Inland Select (Northern Washington) 6-3 over Glacier (Mt.); West Linn (Northern Oregon) 10-3 over Kalispell (Mt.); and
Inland Select (Northern Washington) 9-4 over West Linn (Northern Oregon).



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