Salem-Keizer falls to AquaSox in 13 innings

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The Volcanoes’ Craig Massoni makes a catch for an out at first in Salem-Keizer’s game Monday, June 23.  (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

The Volcanoes’ Craig Massoni makes a catch for an out at first in Salem-Keizer’s game Monday, June 23. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

By HERB SWETT
For the Keizertimes

A 13-inning home game with Everett ended with the Volcanoes on the losing side Tuesday, 6-5.

Salem-Keizer performed well in some ways, including a rebound from starting pitcher Jose Reyes, allowing no AquaSox player to reach base in five innings following a three-run top of the first for Everett.

In the AquaSox first, Chris Mariscal walked, Kyle Petty doubled down the right field line, and Adam Martin scored both with a double down the left field line.  After a wild pitch sent Martin to third base, Phillips Castillo drove him in with a single to right.

Reyes said after the game that an adjustment in his mechanics made the difference between the first inning and the rest of his time on the mound.

The next hit of the game was a bunt single by Johneshwy Fargas, leading off the bottom of the fourth. However, Everett starter Blake Holovach retired the next three batters.

In the Volcano sixth, Jonathan Jones reached first base when Bryan Brito, Everett’s third baseman, made a high throw toward first. Two outs followed, and Randy Jones singled to left center, moving Fargas to third. Craig Massoni brought both runners home with a double to right, and Everett’s lead was cut to 3-2.

Steven Neff relieved Vargas and pitched a scoreless seventh inning. Dusten Knight pitched the eighth and ninth for Salem-Keizer, allowing no one to reach first. Everett put Dylan De Meyer on the mound in the seventh.

The Volcanoes tied the score in the ninth. Shilo McCall hit a one-out double to left, and Kody Kerski came in to pitch. After one more out, a wild pitch moved McCall to third, and an infield single by Fernando Pujadas scored him. One more out sent the game into extra innings.

Ian Gardeck pitched the 10th inning and Eury Sanchez the 11th and 12th for the Volcanoes.

Jake McCasland took the mound in the 13th. Austin Cousino led off with a single and went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Bryan Brito. Smart singled to center, scoring Cousino, and went to second on a throwing error by center fielder Vargas. Mariscal singled to left, driving in Smart. Two walks loaded the bases, and a walk to Brett Thomas forced in Mariscal.

The crowd of 1,633, second smallest of the season at Volcanoes Stadium thus far, then saw another late-inning refusal to quit. Facing a new pitcher, Leoncio Munoz, Travious Relaford led off with an infield single, the ball bouncing off the pitcher’s foot. Brett Kay, who had replaced Ron Jones defensively at second base because Jones had a sore hamstring, singled to center. Massoni struck out, but McCall singled to right, loading the bases. Will Callaway singled to center, scoring Relaford. Newcomer Jared Deacon, who had replaced Pujadas behind the plate, drove in Kay with a sacrifice fly to left.

Munoz then struck out Geno Escalante, ending the game.

Kerski was the winning pitcher and McCasland the loser.

“He’s better than his record shows,” Volcanoes manager Gary Davenport said of his starting pitcher. Davenport added that he was glad to see his players “picking up each other.”

Knight, who starred at the University of Texas Pan American, before going professional, said his curveball was the main reason he was able to retire six straight batters in relief. He sees his long-term role as a long reliever.

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