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The Daily Barometer

The Student News Site of Oregon State University

The Daily Barometer

The Student News Site of Oregon State University

The Daily Barometer

Knights Vanquish Drifters in Extras

Kierstin Thompson
Kellen Segel, Corvallis Knights #9, pitches the ball during the Knights vs Drifters game on June 22.

Bottom of the 11th. Bases loaded. No outs. Tie game. 

The Knights’ Thomas Ferroggiaro steps up to the plate, grabs his helmet, and stares down the pitcher. He smacks a line drive directly towards first base.

As he begins his mad dash, and the three players on base do the same, the ball pops in and out of Jackson Peper’s glove at first base. 

Luke Lavin careens from third base toward home plate. Game over. The Drifters are stunned. The Knights rush the field. 

The home crowd roars.

After 11 innings, the Corvallis Knights emerged victorious, securing a 4-3 win at Goss Stadium at Coleman Field on Saturday.

Having never trailed in the entirety of their game on Saturday against the Springfield Drifters, the Corvallis Knights were not deterred when they saw their 3-0 evaporate to nothing in the top of the 9th inning. 

With an electric crowd, only the next hit mattered.

The Knights entered the game with a record of 15-3, sitting atop the South Division, leaving at 16-3, while the Drifters came in at 8-11 and exited at 8-12.

The game started with solid pitching from both sides. Corvallis’ Jay Flora pitched four shutout innings, allowing only one hit while striking out three. Springfield’s Kyle Starr struggled mightily in five innings, giving up three runs on six hits while committing three errors. 

But while the Drifters had not yet wandered away from ambitions of victory, the hill was too steep to surmount.

In the first inning, Kevin Takeuchi drove in the first run for the Knights on an RBI single, scoring the lead off

hitter who had walked and stole two bases. 

The Knights would add two more runs to their lead in the third inning before the game turned into a pitching battle between the fourth and eighth inning.

The ninth inning saw the Drifters stage a furious rally that saw them put nine batters up; Springfield battled back with a Dylan Woodcook walk that later became a score on a ground out. The Drifters’ Andy Miller and Elijah Maris contributed to tying the game at 3-3 and sending it into extra innings as well.

On a night when their confidence in one another was sky high, it was the Knights’ pitcher Gabe Hernandez, who had entered the game in the tenth and sent the Drifters back to the dugout with no runs.

And when the pitching staff had done its job, the batters stepped up.

In the bottom of the inning, the Knights saw that it was better to be lucky than good, as they loaded the bases with three walks. Blake Wilson, already with an RBI on the day, came through with the winning score when a fielding error allowed Luke Lavin to score the decisive run.

Kevin Takeuchi stood out for Corvallis, going 3-for-5 with a double and an RBI. Wilson contributed two RBIs, and the team demonstrated effective base running with stolen bases from Wilson, Kian Khansarinia, and Tyler Yukumoto.

For Springfield, Woodcook went 1-for-3 with a double and a run scored. Garrett Cooper and Elijah Maris each added an RBI, but the team struggled with runners in scoring position, leaving ten men on base.

Brandon Cabrera, Corvallis Knights #25, runs to home base during the Knights vs Drifters game on June 22. (Kierstin Thompson)

Corvallis’ bullpen was instrumental in the win. Kellen Segel, Kyle Hoskinson, Carter Debban, Nick Marshall, and Hernandez combined for seven innings, allowing just three runs. Hernandez earned the win.

Takeuchi reveled in the victory, “It was a great team by everybody and everybody did their part, everybody chipped in. I think we fought through the momentum. We really wanted to win this one, especially coming off two wins, and get some momentum for tomorrow. Our pitching staff did an excellent job today; everybody kept their cool. We got a few runs early, but then we kinda slowed down, but once we got our lead off guy on base in that last inning, it really gave us confidence.”

Corvallis coach Brooke Knight liked the win as well, “We fought hard and it was a close game, but we stayed steady in the extra innings and found a way to win.”

The Knights will look to continue their winning streak in their next contest against the Drifters. The game is scheduled for Sunday at 4:05 pm at Springfield.

As the season moves into its critical phase, the Corvallis Knights are showing that they are a force to be reckoned with, combining solid pitching, timely hitting and excellent team defense to stay competitive in the league. The upcoming series against Cowlitz Black Bears will be crucial in their quest to win a fourth consecutive division title and fourth consecutive league championship.

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