CHEHALIS — Forks ran into a tough Toutle Lake pitcher who struck out 15 Spartans in a 2-1 loss in the Southwest 2B District baseball championship game.
The Spartans, a high-scoring team for much of the year, managed only three hits against Toutle Lake’s Jackson Cox, who is signed to play for the University of Oregon baseball team.
Toutle Lake is an undefeated team that beat Forks twice, both by one run. The previous loss was 7-6.
Forks’ Carter Windle nearly matched Cox’s effort. He went six innings, gave up six hits and one earned run, and struck out eight and walked two.
“They had some great pitching. That’s what it came down to — a pitchers’ duel,” said coach Jason Richard. “Really, it came down to an error and a walk. He [Cox} definitely has a lot of tools.”
Toutle Lake scored runs in the first and fourth innings and took a 2-0 lead into the sixth. The Spartans’ Trey Baysinger scored without the benefit of a hit. He was hit by a pitch, stole second base, went to third on a balk, then came in to score on a passed ball.
Baysinger, Riley Purser and Ryan Rancourt all had hits for the Spartans. The two teams combined for two errors in the well-played game.
Richard said that not only is Cox signed to play at Oregon, Toutle Lake has a shortstop who has signed to play for Pac-12 powerhouse Oregon State. That’s how good of a program it is.
“If it wasn’t for their core pitching, they’d be beatable,” he said.
Richard said many of the Spartans now have to immediately get ready for basketball, which has its first game today. Several players on the team are expected to be contributors on the Wilder American Legion teams this summer.
It was an exciting spring for the Spartans with baseball, softball and soccer all making it to the district championship games. All three teams lost heartbreakers in the championships by either one run or one goal.
“It was really exciting. There was a lot of energy at the school, ” Richard said. “This was what our community needed.”
Toutle Lake 2, Forks 1
Forks 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 — 1 3 1
TL 1 0 0 1 0 0 x — 2 6 1
WP: J. Cox LP: Windle
Forks — Windle 6 IP, 6 H, ER, 8 K, 2 BB.
Toutle Lake — Cox 7 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 15 K, 2 BB.
Forks — Baysinger 1-1, R, BB, HBP, SB; Pursley 1-3, Rancourt 1-3.