FOREST GROVE, Ore.—The Puget Sound baseball squad swept its second straight series Saturday, winning 9-4 over Pacific at Chuck Bafaro Stadium in Forest Grove, Ore. The Loggers again put up a big inning, scoring five runs in the sixth, to break the game open. With the win, they claimed their longest win streak in six years.
After conceding an early run in the first inning, the Loggers took the lead for good with two scores in the third. Chris Zerio ripped a two-out single through the left side to plate Alex Sierra for the Loggers first run of the game. In the next at bat, Zerio and Connor Savage pulled off a double steal with Zerio taking second and Savage advancing to third. Pacific catcher Danny Yazzolino committed an error on the play, allowing Savage to scamper home to give Puget Sound a permanent lead.
The Loggers added a score in the fifth inning for a two-run lead and blew the game open with five runs in the sixth. They loaded the bases for Savage, who ripped a single to center field to bring in two runs. The base knock extended the junior's hit streak to 10 games, the longest active streak on the team. Zerio followed up Savage's two-RBI knock with one of his own, doubling to left center to bring in Savage and Nickolas Alarcio. They added their ninth and final run in the top of the seventh with a double to left center. The multi-base knock brought home Christian Carter.
Pacific scored three in the bottom of the seventh, but the Loggers didn't let the Boxers come any closer. Chris Moreno and Kian Kurokawa shut the door on the Boxer rally, combining to throw 2.2 innings of two-hit ball to end the game. Logger starter Lucas Stone earned the win after throwing another quality start, going 6.0 innings and allowing just one run while fanning eight batters.
Zerio led the Loggers at the plate Saturday, going 3-for-4 with four RBIs and a walk. He extended his hit streak to nine games with the RBI single in the third inning. Both Sierra and Addison Melzer added multiple hits for the Loggers as Sierra brought in one RBI scored two runs on a single, double, and a walk, and Melzer scored one run on a single, double and a walk as well.
Puget Sound last won six games in a row from March 2 to March 15, 2008 when they pulled off seven consecutive wins. During their current six-game stretch, the Loggers are averaging 8.0 runs per game, well above their season average of 4.2. As a team, they're hitting .339 during the stretch with 15 extra-base hits and an on-base percentage of .410. The pitching staff is holding its own as well, racking up a 2.83 combined ERA and 40 strikeouts in the last six games.
With the win, Puget Sound advances to 11-10 in Northwest Conference play (13-17 overall) and is solidly in fifth place in the conference. The Loggers hope to continue their hot streak with a mid-week game at Saint Martin's on Tuesday, April 22. First pitch for that contest is slated for 3:00 p.m. on Saints Field in Lacey, Wash.