Baseball season is underway. The Raiders, along with new Head Coach Kevin Davis, are known as the 2012 NWAACC champions. The plan is to keep that title.
It’s a short list of players who returning to the team this year, as the club will have to go without sluggers Josh Potter and Brian Corliss.
Last year, the two combined for a total of 71 RBI to help lead the team. One of the players taking their place is first baseman Wesley Hoskins.
Hoskins is off to a strong start already with eight hits in 12 at bats, and three of them being doubles.
Also returning are Deven Kaaiwela, Dj Gee, Kyle Pegram, d’Aundray VanSlyke, Michael Sherwin, Trever Quitugua, Levi Goodin, Austin Weber and Elliot Morris.
Gee was a potent part of the offense last year, however, he also had Tommy John surgery and is currently inactive.
Davis hopes Gee can return at some point during the season but that may be out of the question.
Last year Elliot Morris returned after missing the entire 2011 season due to Tommy John surgery and started the season with a low pitch count. Currently healthy, Morris took the hill as the starter in the first game of the season and pitched six strong innings giving up just one run on two hits while striking out four and not walking any. From there the game got out of hand as Skagit Valley College tied the game in the ninth and ended up winning the game in the 11th inning on a wild pitch.
In the second game of the season the Raiders were shutout 4-0 as Skagit starter, Jens Jensen went the entire seven innings giving up just four hits. A bright spot in the game for Pierce was Kyle Pegram who collected two of those hits himself including a double.
Kyle Kornegay got the first win of the season for the Raiders as the starting pitcher in game three. Kornegay went a strong six innings giving up just one run on three hits and striking out 10 batters along the way. He’s a lengthy right hander from Anchorage, Alaska, who stands at 6 foot, 5 inches tall and already looks impressive on the mound. Weber closed the game pitching the final three innings without giving up a run or even a hit while striking out two and collected his first save.
Game four had its own heroics as the Raiders went into the bottom of the sixth inning tied at two. Hoskins led off the inning with a double and was followed by VanSlyke who got on base the hard way getting hit by a pitch. With runners at first and second and only one out, Josh McCoy hit an RBI double, scoring Hoskins and advancing VanSlyke to third. After a DJ Elmer walk to load the bases, Trever Quitugua took four balls as well to walk in another run and put the Raiders up 4-2 and seal the victory.
The Raiders have played four games against Skagit Valley already and split the series at two games each. The first two on March 2 were losses, but the team bounced back on the third and won both games of the double header.
Pierce players travelled to Pendleton, Ore., for a double header on March 9 and then to Walla Walla, Wash., on March 10 and will play at home again on the March 16 at Mt. Tahoma High School in Tacoma.
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