By GERRY STEELE
Of the Baker City Herald
Bakers been in a rut for most of the Greater Oregon League softball season. With the exception of four games against Vale, the Bulldogs have had to settle for splitting all of their other league doubleheaders.
The trend continued Thursday at the Baker Sports Complex when Baker divided a pair of games against Ontario. The Bulldogs lost the first game 5-2, but bounced back to win the second game 7-2.
We got into a hole in the first game, and didnt climb out, said Baker coach Steve Bachman.
We have one good inning, then seem to follow it up with a bad inning.
Baker broke a 0-0 tie with two runs in the bottom of the third. Ashley Rino slapped a one-out triple to right-center field, then scored on a bloop single to right by Savannah Newman.
Newman then stole second, and went to third on a single by Nicole Landstrom. Newman scored when, after Beth Hull lined out to second, the Ontario second baseman tried to double Landstrom off first base. The throw was wide and Newman scampered home.
Baker pitcher Megan Curtis held Ontario hitless until the fifth inning. Then, the Tigers turned the tide. Three singles and a fielders choice left the bases loaded with two outs. Curtis walked in the first run, then hit a batter to force home the tying run.
Lacey Barker relieved Curtis and promptly threw a wild pitch, allowing the third run of the inning to cross the plate.
Ontario added insurance runs in the sixth and seventh.
Baker never mounted a threat the rest of the game.
Baker fell behind 2-0 after an inning and a half in the second game before getting started again.
An RBI double by Ashley Craig, and run-scoring single by Chase Shira in the bottom of the second knotted the game at 2-2.
Baker took the lead for good in the third. Rino was hit by a pitch. Then, when Newman laid down an attempted sacrifice bunt along the first base line, Rino raced all the way to third. And, Newman beat the throw to first for a hit.
Landstrom then scored Rino with a single up the middle.
Rino and Hull added RBI doubles in the fourth and sixth innings. Baker scored two more runs in the fifth on a pair of Ontario errors.
Barker pitched the complete game win in the circle.
Hull and Landstrom each finished the game with three hits.
The split leaves Baker a game ahead of Ontario in third place heading into todays twinbill against Riverside at the Sports Complex. Riverside is in second place in the GOL standings.
Our pitching was pretty decent against Ontario, Bachman said. We still have to take care of business, and right now we arent doing that.
It would have been nice to have two wins against Ontario, he said. If we can put two wins together (against Riverside) well be right back in the thick of things.
The first pitch is scheduled at 2 oclock this afternoon.
Ontario 0 0 0 0 3 1 1 5
Baker 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 2
Ogawa and Gonzalez. Curtis, Barker (5), Curtis (6) and Craig, Rino (7). WP Ogawa. LP Curtis.
Ontario hits Gonzalez, Smith-Davidson, Ogawa, Aguilar, Aronson, Hawk. Baker hits Hull, Rino, Newman 2, Landstrom, Parks, Kuchenbecker.
Ontario RBI Buchanan, Hawk, Ogawa, Aguilar. Baker RBI Newman.
Ontario 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 2
Baker 0 2 1 1 2 1 x 7
Aronson, Ogawa (5) and Gonzalez. Barker and Craig. WP Barker. LP Aronson.
Ontario hits Ogawa, Moeller, Aguilar, Smith-Davidson, Buchanan, Arant. Baker hits Hull 3, Craig, Shira, Newman, Landstrom 3, Rino.
Ontario RBI Aguilar. Baker RBI Hull, Craig, Shira, Landstrom, Rino, Kreger.
2B Aguilar, Buchanan, Hull, Craig, Rino.