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CC Baseball: Blazers Get One of Four From Lower Columbia

Centralia managed a split on Saturday but was swept on Sunday in a four-game NWAC West Region baseball series that proved to be close all the way through.

Centralia out-hit Lower Columbia 12-9 in Saturday’s opener, but four errors helped the Red Devils make the most of their offense in the 12-8 win.

Mitch Johnson went 2 for 5 and drove in three runs for Centralia, and Jordan Martinez, Eric Fich and Josh Muneno each had two hits. Centralia led 8-6 after seven innings, only to see Lower Columbia score six in the eighth and hold on for the win behind a two-inning shutout relief pitching performance from Woodland product Trevor Huddleston.

John Sharkey got his third-straight complete game win in Game 2, striking out three and holding the Red Devils to four hits in the 6-4 win. Fich and Taylor Mondina each homered, and Brady Woodrum went 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI. Muneno, Martinez and Mondina each had two hits.

Sunday’s opener saw Lower Columbia take a 6-0 lead after four innings of an eventual 6-2 win. Muneno and Martinez each had two hits for Centralia, but the Blazers issued eight walks to help Lower Columbia turn its eight hits into more offense.

The series finale was tight, though the Red Devils eventually won 3-2. Lower Columbia led 3-0 after three before Centralia rallied with two in the fifth — on an RBI single from Muneno and an RBI grounder from Martinez. That, though, was where the rally would end, and LC’s Jared Akin struck out five in a complete-game effort with one walk and six hits. Dimitri Sakellariou went 3 for 3 for the Blazers.

Connor Davis was the hard-luck losing pitcher, striking out three in his own complete-game effort.

Centralia (9-30, 8-13 league) clinched a spot in the NWAC regional playoffs with Saturday’s win, and plays Pierce in a doubleheader on Friday at Mt. Tahoma High School.

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