HRV baseball headed into last Friday’s home game riding a three-game winning streak, the Eagles’ second longest streak of the season.
On Friday, May 4, HRV welcomed the Hermiston Bulldogs to Hood River for a crucial matchup regarding Columbia River Conference standings.
The Eagles were two games ahead of the Bulldogs at 6-3 in conference, with three games remaining on the season, and had led the season series 2-1.
Behind a dominating pitching performance from Greyson Losee, HRV secured at least a second place finish in the conference with a 1-0 victory over the Bulldogs.
The victory for HRV moves the Eagles to 7-3 in conference, one game behind the 8-2 Pendleton Buckaroos for first place in conference with one matchup remaining between these two teams.
Pendleton currently leads the season series against HRV 2-1, but the Eagles had a chance to tie the series on the road in Pendleton on Tuesday, May 8 (results unavailable at press time).
Against Hermiston, Losee was nearly unhittable.
Through seven innings pitched, Losee surrendered zero runs on only one hit, striking out 10 Bulldog batters; his second highest strikeout total in a game this season.
The win for Losee moves him to 5-2 on the season and 3-0 in league play.
As dominating as Losee was on the mound, so was Hermiston’s starting pitcher Tolan.
Through the first five innings pitched, Tolan had held the Eagles scoreless and HRV only had racked up two hits on the day.
But in the sixth inning, the Eagles would finally break through in the run column.
JJ Mears, with one of only three hits on the day for HRV, hit a triple on a line drive to left field to lead off the bottom of the sixth inning for the Eagles.
On the triple, Mears nearly turned the corner around third base to head home for an inside park homerun, but head coach Erich Harjo held him up at third base.
The next batter, Connor Coerper, hit a hard line-drive that was snagged out of the air by the Hermiston shortstop for the first out of the inning.
With the leading run still at third, Isaac Beaman stepped up to the plate for HRV.
After getting down 1-2 in the count, Beaman put the fourth pitch up in the air to left field for a sacrifice fly; Mears advanced home for the first and only run of this game.
With only three outs remaining to secure the victory, HRV had to have felt pretty good seeing Losee walk up to the mound for potentially the final inning of the game.
Losee quickly was ahead of the count 0-2 against the lead-off man for Hermiston, and in the fourth pitch of the at bat Losee picked up a ground out for the first out of the inning.
The second batter for Hermiston took a strike on the first pitch of his at bat, and then hit a grounder to third baseman Caden Leiblein on the second pitch.
Leiblein fielded the ground ball and threw across the diamond to Coerper at first base for the second out of the inning.
Losee would then end this game in fashion.
Ahead of the count 1-2, Losee picked up his 10th strikeout of the game on the final out, securing the Eagles a 1-0 victory over the Bulldogs.
Losee, Mears, and Brandon Rivera each collected one hit to combine for the Eagles’ three total hits on the day.
With the win over Hermiston, HRV moved to 13-10 overall, 7-3 in conference and extended its winning streak to four.
HRV headed into Tuesday’s matchup on the road in Pendleton with a conference title on the line (results unavailable at press time).