Kelowna Falcons

Wright Walks Off

The Kelowna Falcons picked up their fourth win in a row in walk-off fashion as Taylor Wright brought the game to a close with a 10th inning single to give Kelowna a 4-3 victory over the Cowlitz Black Bears on Tuesday night at Elks Stadium.

Trevor Brigden gave the Falcons a solid 6.2 innings pitched, allowing three runs (just one of those earned) and giving up five hits while striking out six and walking three with Reece Weinberg and Cal Hehnke providing excellent relief performances as the Falcons earned the series win in the extra inning victory over the Black Bears.

The Falcons opened the scoring in the ballgame in the bottom of the first inning as newly-anointed All-Stars Trent Tinglestad and Dan Pruitt provided Kelowna with the lead. Tinglestad ripped an RBI double down the right field line before Pruitt brought him home on an RBI single to put the Falcons ahead by a 2-0 score.

The lead for Kelowna did not last long, however, as the Black Bears scored a pair of runs in the top half of the second inning as an error with two outs kept the inning alive for an RBI single from Austin Bell and a run scoring double off the bat of Ryan Kim got Cowlitz even at a 2-2 score.

The pitching took over from there as both starters in Brigden and Seth Rayburn were able to put zeros on the scoreboard through the 3rd and 4th innings before Cowlitz took their first lead of the game in the 5th frame as Blake Burton smacked an RBI double down the left field line and put Cowlitz ahead 3-2.

The Falcons offence responded in the bottom of the 6th inning as they were able to get the game tied up once again as Mike Pineiro delivered a sacrifice fly to left field that plated Wright from 3rd to get the game evened up at 3-3 as the pitching battle between the two teams raged on.

“Sometimes you’re going to have to scrape out runs and not be able to get 20 hits a night like we did on Monday,” said Falcons infielder Taylor Wright, “Luckily for us tonight, our pitching staff picked us up and kept us in it until the end.”

Weinberg came on for 1.1 innings pitched and did not allow a run before giving way to Cal Hehnke in the 9th inning while Marty Maves was keeping the game locked down for the Black Bears after strong outings from each of their team’s starters.

“The pitching story in the game was how Brigden was able to get us that deep into the game,” stated Falcons Head Coach Bryan Donohue, “For him to go 6 2/3 and allow just one earned run was huge for us and guys are ready to go in the bullpen and it showed tonight.”

The Falcons put a pair of runners on in the 10th inning with Taylor Wright stepping into the plate and a runner on first and third base. Wright got deep in the count before getting a changeup and sending it out to the wall in right field, scoring the game winning run from 3rd in the way of Cody Crowder and gave Kelowna a walk-off 4-3 victory in 10 innings.

“I got the feeling like he was trying to work around me until we were able to get a runner into second and move the infield in, then he started coming at me,” said Wright, “He had a good changeup that I swung through on 2-1 and he gave it to me again and left it a little high so I could get it in the air and elevate it.”

Hehnke picked up his third win of the season, going two innings allowing no runs on a hit and a walk while striking out five batters. Marty Maves took the loss for Cowlitz as the Falcons (19-13) go for the sweep against the Black Bears (13-19) on Wednesday night at Elks Stadium. First pitch is set for 6:35 PM with tickets available for purchase on the Falcons website and also at the door ahead of the opening pitch.

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