The Bells defeated the non-league Cascade Collegiate League showcase team by a final score of 4-3. Bellingham won the game in the bottom of the 9th on a walk-off RBI single from RHP Ryan Beitel, their first walk-off of the summer.
Bellingham kicked off the scoring in the bottom of the 2nd with a leadoff HR by Luis Aviles. He blasted the home run out of the stadium for the second time in three games, this one traveling 390 feet and 107 MPH off the bat. Aviles leads the team with five HR this summer.
The Bells added another in the bottom of the 4th, with Ezra Samperi scoring Cody Schrier on a bloop single with two outs.
Starting pitcher Joey Dixon left with the lead after tossing four scoreless innings. He allowed baserunners in three innings, but pitched well in the clutch. He finished with a line of 4.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 3 K.
Cascade took the lead with a three-run top of the 5th off of Connor Portugal (1.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K). Luke Rohleder reached on a bunt and stole second with one out, and Michael Ball scored him on an RBI single. A walk put two runners on, and an RBI single from Tyler Wheeler scored them both.
The 3-2 CCL lead held until the 8th inning. The Bells had the bases loaded in the 7th, but couldn’t score a run. They loaded the bases again in the 8th. Charlie Saum led off with a walk, and Ryan Beitel entered the game as a pinch runner. He came in to score four batters later, when Ty Saunders was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.
Bellingham had the momentum heading into the bottom of the 9th after two lights-out inning from Aaron Barokas (2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K). He struck out the side in the top of the 9th. James Spickelmier (2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 K) also tossed two clean innings of his own.
The bottom of the 9th led off with a walk drawn by AJ Davis. He advanced to second on a balk. After replacing Charlie Saum in the 8th, Ryan Beitel came back up to bat with a runner on second and one out. He lined a single through the infield, and scored Davis for the walk-off winner. As a pitcher, Beitel is now 2-2 on the year with one RBI. For his late-game heroics, he earned Player of the Game honors.
In total, the Bells were out-hit 9-8 and they committed no errors. They drew 12 walks, struck out seven times, and left a total of 15 runners on base.
Bellingham will take on the Cascade Collegiate League again tomorrow night at 6:35 PM. Tickets can be found at www.bellstickets.com