WSU baseball survives fast start from Redhawks, improves to 11-1 on the year

Cougars remain perfect at home with conference play starting Friday

JAKE HULL, Evergreen reporter

WSU baseball (11-1) hosted the Seattle U Redhawks Tuesday to close out the bulk of their non-Conference schedule. 

The Redhawks started strong, hitting a two-run home run in the top of the second inning, but remained scoreless for the rest of the game as the Coug pitching put on a clinic. WSU got hot in the middle of the game, scoring four runs in the bottom of the fifth to help secure the 8-2 win. 

Starting pitcher Shane Spencer went five innings for the Cougs where his only hiccup was the two-run shot in the second inning. He finished with two hits allowed and seven strikeouts with two walked batters. Chase Grillo entered in the ninth and struck out three batters to help secure the win for the Cougs. 

Sam Brown was the designated hitter for the game, where he hit another solo home run, his fourth in his last four games. He has hit a home run in every game in Pullman so far this season. 

Cam Magee had three hits in four plate appearances on the day; he was also hit by a pitch. The Cougs were hit by four pitches in the game and walked five times as a team. 

First Inning: 

The Cougs’ top of the first saw Spencer strike out the side on 13 pitches to put the first zero on the board. Offensively, the Cougs got a leadoff triple from Jonah Advincula, but did not bring him home as the Cougs’ next three batters struck out swinging. 


Second Inning: 

The top of the second was when the Redhawks hit their two-run homer off Spencer to take the early lead. Ryne Hays hit the homer after the previous batter got on base by a walk. After the home run, Spencer allowed a single, but settled down and got the next two batters to get out to end their half of the inning. 

The Cougs responded with one run of their own. The first two batters reached base with a single and a walk. Magee advanced to third on a fielder’s choice out from Alan Shibley. Kyle Russell, who returned to the lineup for the first time in over a week, picked up the RBI after another fielder’s choice out to cut the lead to one. Advincula then loaded the bases with a single, but the Cougs got out and left runners stranded. 

Third Inning:

The Redhawks went three-up three-down in the inning as Spencer picked up another strikeout. 

For the Cougs, Brown started the inning being hit by a pitch, but the next three batters got out to strand Brown. 

Fourth Inning: 

The fourth inning was boring for offensive fans of both teams as the Cougs and Redhawks went three-up three-down. If you are a fan of pitching, you loved the inning. Spencer struck out two of the three batters while the Redhawks pitcher struck out all three Coug batters. 

Fifth Inning: 

The only error from Spencer in the inning was a two-out walk but was made up for with the next batter getting out for yet another zero on the scoresheet. 

WSU took the lead this inning as they scored four runs. Advincula walked to start the inning while Jacob McKeon singled to get runners on first and third with no outs. Brown hit a sac fly, scoring Advincula to tie the game at two. After a throwing error, Magee doubled, scoring one runner to set the Cougs up for more scoring. Magee then scored off a single from Shibley to give WSU the 5-2 lead. 

Sixth Inning: 

Cam Liss came in to pitch for the Cougs where he allowed a leadoff single but got the next three batters out to stop the Redhawks’ offensive turn. 

Brown homered in the inning to give WSU the 6-2 lead. He is now on a four-game home run streak and has hit all his homers in Pullman this season. 


Seventh Inning: 

Andrew Baughn took over on the mound for the Cougs where he gets a strikeout and two groundouts for a solid inning of work. Russell got a walk for the Cougs but was the only base runner as the next batters struck out and flew out to head to the eighth. 

Eighth Inning:

Baughn earned another zero for the Cougs as he struck out his first batter, then had the next two ground out to end the inning. 

The Cougs added another two runs in the inning. Brown was hit by his second pitch of the game to get runners on base. Magee was then hit by a pitch to load the bases, where Elijah Hainline picked up an RBI off a fielder’s choice. Brown then scored on a wild pitch to give WSU the 8-2 lead heading into the ninth.

Ninth Inning: 

Grillo came in to close the game for the Cougs and he did just that. He struck out his first two batters, then gave up a double, but quickly made up for it with another strikeout to end the game and improve the Cougs’ record to 11-1.

The next time the Cougs take the field is Friday in as they take on the Oregon State Beavers for three games in the first Pac-12 action for the Cougs. The first pitch will be at 5:35 p.m. Friday in Corvallis, Oregon.