The Eureka Loggers got back to winning ways with a couple of key victories over Fortuna on Friday to remain unbeaten in Big 5 baseball with one week remaining in league play.
One day after a disappointing non-league loss to crosstown rivals St. Bernard’s ended their nine-game winning streak, the Loggers responded by sweeping the Big 5 doubleheader and improving to 9-0 in league play.
They now need just one win in three games against Arcata next week to clinch at least a share of this year’s league crown, and they can clinch it outright with two wins.
But they had to battle on Friday.
They faced an early a six-run deficit in the opener, but rallied to win 7-6, and they followed that with a 6-5 victory in nine innings in game two, with Cole Zeller scoring the walk-off winning run.
The Huskies came to play, scoring three runs in each of the first two innings of game one to lead 6-0, but the Loggers quickly shook off any hangover effects from Thursday night and plated six runs in the bottom of the second inning to tie things up.
Neither team could get much offense going after that with Eureka’s Cooper Ohlsen and Fortuna’s Cody Collins both settling into the game on the mound.
The Loggers got the breakthrough in the bottom of the fifth. Caden Vance got on base with a lead-off walk, before advancing on a Zeller bunt and then scoring on an Abel Lopez double to center field.
Junior ace Myles Standish took over on the mound in the top of the sixth and threw two hitless innings to seal the win.
Standish got the second-inning rally started with a lead-off double, as the Loggers brought 11 batters to the plate in the inning.
Richard Reeves had a two-RBI single, while Rogan Bode added an RBI triple, and Michael Jewell and Ean Savage each also had RBI hits in the inning.
Rylan Lommori had a good game for Fortuna, finishing 3-for-4, while Troy Bugbee was 2-for-4 with a double and Cody Sauers was 2-for-4.
Cole Victorine added a triple and Matt Letter a double, while Collins, Daniel Osborne, and Cole Ayala each also had a hit.
Collins pitched five innings and took the loss on the mound, striking out four.
In game two, Standish continued to dominate on the mound and struck out all nine batters he faced in three innings in relief of Vance, who got the start and went 4.2 innings.
Jackson Giacone got the win in relief.
Vance also was 3-for-5 at the plate, as was Giacone, who had a double, while Bode capped a good day by going 2-for-3 with a double, two walks, two RBIs and two runs.
Reeves also had a double and scored twice, while Lopez was 1-for-5.
Bugbee remained hot at the plate for Fortuna in game two and finished 2-for-5 with a double, while Letter and Ayala each finished 2-for-4 with a double.
Osborne, Lommori and Tyler Schlesiger each also had a hit.
Letter got the start on the mound, with Ayala taking the loss in relief.
“In game two, we battled back twice and that was good to see,” Fortuna head coach Andy Olsen said. “I thought we pitched well enough to win and we hit well enough to win, we just came up on the wrong side of two good games.”
With the wins, the Loggers have now won 11 of their last 12 games to go to 13-7 on the season.
The Huskies dropped to 4-5 in the Big 5 and 11-7 overall.