Mike Egami is mid swing as the ball comes flying towards him and his teammates watch on from the dugout. Egami’s hit resulted in a single and RBI which brought his teammate Brandon Cobo home.
The Feather River Golden Eagles’ baseball team swept its second team this season, the Lassen Cougars, in a three game series March 15-16.
The Eagles traveled to Susanville on March 15 for their first game of the series and hosted the Cougars the following day for the remaining two.
The Eagles dominated on Lassen’s field, shutting out the Cougars 8-0. The next day, the Eagles squeaked out a 3-2 win in a close game that entered the tenth inning. Immediately following, the Eagles allowed only a single run to beat Lassen 7-1.
The three wins advanced Feather River to 6-0 in conference play. Two weeks prior, the Eagles swept Shasta in an away series. The wins also bring the Eagles overall record up to 13-7.
“We like where we are right now, being 6-0”, said the Eagles’ coach Terry Baumgartner. “It’s very important to us, knowing we’re doing a good job and learned from February’s games. We like March right now.”
The Eagles’ pitcher Michael Bennett carried Feather River in the first game against Lassen. Bennett struck out seven batters. Only two batters managed to hit off Bennett.
“Bennett was really good that day,” said Baumgartner. “He was in command all day and created an offensive rhythm. We had a great day in general that day.”
The Eagles took off in the fourth inning, bringing four players home. Justin Bohn, Jake Bray, Brock Asher and Chadwick Kaalekehi all made it home.
Bray followed the fourth inning up with a homer in the fifth, the only run of the inning. The Eagles made one more run in the seventh and two more in the eighth to finish off the game.
The next day was the Eagles’ first game of the season at Feather River College. Fans packed the bleachers, rooting the Eagles on. The Eagles didn’t disappoint their fans.
“We finally got a good hit when we needed it,” commented Baumgartner. “All day we had guys in scoring position, but just couldn’t get our guys home.”
The Eagles struck first blood in the first when Jose Sierra hit a single to score Ryan Coleman from third. Both teams were on top of their games after that and the next four innings were scoreless.
Lassen scored in the sixth when Dennis Morelli singled and Walker Gemmill scored. The Cougars followed it up in the top of the seventh when Daniel Gonzales ran home from third on a passed ball. The close play at the plate was debated amongst the crowd.
Feather River tied the game in the bottom of the seventh when Mike Egami singled to bring Brandon Coborn home. Neither team scored in the eighth and ninth and the game went into extra innings.
The Eagles’ closer, Bray, pitched incredibly at the end of the game. Bray struck out all three batters in the ninth and the first two in the tenth.
Finally, in the bottom of the 10th, with the bases loaded, Kaalekahi hit a grounder that bounced out to left field to bring Bray home and win the game.
The Eagles kept their winning momentum going in the next game. Lassen got an early run in the first, which ultimately ended up being its only one of the game.
The Eagles pitching was once again solid. Matt Thomas pitched the first six innings, Kody Kuhlman the seventh and eighth and Clay Eagleton closed the game in the ninth.
The Eagles didn’t score their first run until the bottom of the sixth when four players made it home. Feather River scored two more runs in the seventh and one in the eighth.
“In the last few innings, we got a good number of hits in,” said Baumgartner. “That’s what won us that game. Also, all three games this weekend were pitched very well. In a three game series we only gave up three runs, so that’s pretty good.”
The Eagles’ next game is against Butte College on March 22 at 2 p.m. in Quincy. The game is the first in a three game series. The last two games will be played at Butte the following day.