Pirates take series from Boxers but fall short of NWC tournament

by Henry Miller | Staff Writer

The Pirates finished out the 2018 season with a series in Forest Grove, Oregon against the Pacific University Boxers. Last season’s all conference pitcher Hugh Smith, ‘19, threw a complete game shutout, in game one, to improve to 6-1 on the season. Smith, who is second place in total strikeouts in the NWC, struck out seven batters and only walked two. Smith also only allowed one run which brought his league leading ERA to 1.66.  The Pirates tallied twelve hits in Saturdays 7-0 game one win. Two of those hits came from starting shortstop Joel Condreay, ‘18. First basemen Spencer Locati, ‘18, led the team with two RBI’s. Pacific’s starting pitcher, Sam Lawrence, fell to 5-4 after allowing six runs in four innings.

Game two slipped away from the Pirates. Whitworth trailed 5-1 until the top of the eight when Nicholas Nerud,‘19, scored on a wild pitch, followed by a Tyler Bailey, ‘19, RBI and a Locati home run. The Boxers would score the winning run in the bottom of the ninth to eliminate Whitworth’s playoff hopes. Whitworth’s starting pitcher Brett Thomas, ‘21, struck out four batters and allowed three runs in his five innings pitched.Locati lead the team once again with two RBI’s.

Game three finished on Sunday with a 9-2 victory for the Pirates. T.J. Orchard,20’, struck out four and allowed four hits over seven innings pitched. Outfielder J.T. Phelan,18’, smacked two doubles and three RBI’s. Third baseman Tyler Bailey,19’, also added two RBI’s toward the Pirates win over eighth ranked Pacific.

The Pirates finished the season 11-13, sixth place in conference play. Despite unexpected coaching departures at the beginning of the season, Whitworth’s pitching staff was a force to be reckoned with the whole year. Top offense teams George Fox and PLU struggled against Whitworth’s strong pitchers. We look forward to next season and another spring of Pirate baseball.