The Eugene Emeralds dropped the series opener to the Everett AquaSox by a final score of 2-1. With the loss today, Eugene has officially been eliminated from postseason contention and Everett has punched their ticket to the Northwest League Championship to take on the Vancouver Canadians.
Tonight’s game had a little bit of everything and it was filled with drama until the very end. Both starters were fantastic tonight, and the game was scoreless over the first 4 innings. With 1-out Grant McCray delivered a single and was able to advance into 2nd base on a wild pitch. With 2-outs, Aeverson Arteaga hit a single through the left side of the infield and McCray scored on the play to give Eugene the 1-0 lead.
Trevor McDonald was the starter tonight for Eugene and he looked absolutely dominant on the mound. He pitched 4.2 innings and gave up just 3 hits without allowing a run. He walked 1 batter and struck out 4. His ERA now sits at 0.53 this year with Eugene. Tanner Kiest pitched the next 1.1 innings and gave up just 1 hit while walking 1 batter and striking out 1. For Everett, Reid Vanscooter gave the AquaSox 6.2 innings on the mound. He gave up 7 hits and 1 earned run while walking just 1 batter and he struck out 12.
William Kempner pitched the 7th and 8th innings for Eugene and he retired the first 5 AquaSox batters that he faced. With 2-outs in the 8th inning, Hogan Windish was able to single out to right field to put the game-tying at 1st. The next batter, Ben Ramirez, then hit his 12th home run of the season to straight away center field to give Everett their first lead of the game.
The top of the 9th was filled with drama. Brett Auerbach singled to start the inning and Thomas Gavello drew a walk. They had a double-steal to put the game-tying run on 90 feet from home. Damon Dues struck out and Grant McCray drew a walk to load up the bases with just 1-out. Carter Howell struck out and the Emeralds hopes fell on the back of Aeverson Arteaga who was 4-4 coming into the plate appearance. He battled at the plate but ultimately went down swinging to give Everett the win.
It was a dramatic game but Everett was just able to edge out the Emeralds to eliminate them from postseason play. It’s a day off tomorrow for these two teams but they’ll be back in action on Wednesday. Left-handed pitcher Seth Lonsway will be on the mound for Eugene with first pitch set for 7:05 P.M.