By Josh Bronson
Pilot staff writer
The Brookings-Harbor High School baseball team kept themselves in the playoff hunt with a key 3-1 victory over the Douglas Trojans Tuesday afternoon.
"This was a huge win for us," Tyler Parke said. "It was probably our biggest game of the season because now we have the tiebreaker over Douglas."
With the win, the Bruins and Trojans are now tied for third place in league with a 5-5 league record, but the Bruins won the season series between the two teams, 2-1.
"I think these are maturing and the veteran players are showing good leadership," assistant coach Greg Jones said. "They're fun to watch and fun to be a part of."
Parke pitched an excellent game for the Bruins (5-5, 6-10), striking out 14 batters while only giving up two hits and one walk.
"I felt good, better than last week," Parke said. "My curveball was working well early, but then I had to rely on my fastball later on to get ahead of hitters."
Offensively, the Bruins struck first as Patrick Carper hit his second home run of the year a two-run shot in the third inning that brought home Parke, who walked.
In the top of the fifth inning, the Trojans' Brian Ortis hit an RBI double to left to cut the Bruin lead to 2-1.
But then Parke struck out two of the final three batters and forced another to ground out to Dustin Paradis to get out of the inning.
The Bruins added an insurance run in the bottom of the inning, and they did it all with two outs.
Carper started the rally with a single to left, followed by a single up the middle by Joey LaThorpe.
Jacob Eszlinger then hit a single over the head of the first baseman that found a place to drop, scoring Carper from second to go up 3-1.
Parke then put the Trojans down in order in the final two innings, including a spectacular running catch by Eszlinger in left field to end the game.
Carper went 2-for-3 on the day with two runs and two RBIs and Eszlinger was also 2-for-3 with an RBI.
Fred Corpening and LaThorpe had the other Bruin hits while Nick Taresh, Parke, Ryan Gardner and Paradis all drew walks.
The Bruin defense had another solid outing and didn't commit any errors.
"The whole team stepped up and played clean," Coach Pat Berkowitz said. "We pushed hard to get this game in and the good Lord gave us the weather to do it."
The Bruins are on somewhat of hot streak as of late, winning four of their last six games, and competing in each and every one of them.
"After the doubleheader against South Umpqua, the whole team has been doing well and we have confidence in each other," Eszlinger said.
On Thursday, May 1, the Bruins play a doubleheader at North Bend that begins at 3 p.m.