BELLINGHAM – No. 2 state-ranked Brewster used some heavy hitting to turn back No. 1 Meridian, 5-4, in eight innings of a non-league baseball game Wednesday.
“I told the kids we better not have a five-hour bus ride to lose a game,” Bears coach Todd Phillips said.
“We hit better than we have all year and saw our first lefty. We put the ball in play hard in all but maybe two or three at-bats.”
Clutch hitting and going to opposite fields lifted the Bears to a 2-0 lead after four innings.
Meridian cut the lead to 2-1 after five and, after Brewster scored one in the top of the sixth, tied the game with two runs in the bottom of the sixth.
In the top of the seventh, Brewster’s Luke Divis singled, moved to second on a “beautiful” sacrifice bunt by Luis Garcia and scored on a double by Chris Varelas, Phillips said of going up 4-3.
“We left Chris stranded on third, a run we could have used,” Phillips said.
An error allowed Meridian to score in the bottom of the seventh for the tie.
Brewster produced the winning run in the top of the eighth with Timbo Taylor walking, moving to second on an errant pickoff throw and to third on a single by Easton Driessen.
Taylor scored as Meridian caught Driessen trying to steal second base.
“Easton (2-0) then came in for the eighth and shut the door to give us the win” over the Trojans, which suffered their first loss of the season, Phillips said.
Brewster’s Raul Olivera pitched six innings, giving up six hits, walking five and yielding three earned runs.
Taylor, who has yet to allow an earned run this year, pitched the seventh.
Mitch Boesel went 3-4 hitting.
As catcher, he picked off three Meridian players attempting to advance.
Phillips did not give the early baseball poll much credence since it lacked league favorites Cashmere and Quincy.
Brewster was to close out spring break at Reardan yesterday.
Caribou Trail League play starts Tuesday with Omak (1-3) at Brewster (3-0), Tonasket (4-0) at Okanogan (3-0), Quincy (3-2) at Cashmere (3-1) and Chelan (1-3) at Cascade (2-2).
Brewster (5) – Divis 2-3, R, RBI; Taylor 1-3, R, RBI, BB; Driessen 2-4, 2R; Boesel 3-4, R; Urias 1-4; Varelas 1-3, RBI, 2B.