Twins’ season ends at state
The American Legion Twins were eliminated from the state tournament Tuesday in a 9-5 loss to Dimond at Mulcahy Stadium in Anchorage.
The Twins led 3-0 entering the bottom of the fifth inning, 4-2 entering the bottom of the seventh and 5-4 entering the bottom of the eighth, when Dimond finally broke the game open.
Dimond scored five runs against starter AJ Hull and relievers Josiah Covey and Kevin Rowe in the home half of the eighth, sending nine hitters to the plate.
Hull, who took the loss in allowing five runs on eight hits over seven innings, was pulled after Austin Brown opened the eighth with a double.
Covey hit a batter and walked another before Cory Clevenger notched a go-ahead, two-run double. Later in the inning, Matt Pritchard also hit an RBI-double. A Vince Partusch single capped the rally.
When the dust cleared, Dimond had a four-run cushion. The Twins failed to score in the ninth.
"We couldn't close it out," Twins manager Lance Coz said. "We just needed somebody to come off the bench and shut things down."
Dimond received two hits apiece from Lauwers, Clevenger, Pritchard and Partusch.
Hull had a big day at the plate for the Twins, going 4 for 5 with two runs. Seven of the Twins' nine starters tallied at one hit as the squad finished with 12 to Dimond's 11. Covey and Shayne Miller both finished 2 of 4, with Covey tallying two RBIs.
Coz praised Hull for his efforts on both sides of the ball.
"He just provides so much leadership and confidence that everyone depends on," Coz said. "He threw a good ball game. In the last innings, he was pitching on guts and heart, trying to finish it out."
Sagan Osborne threw a complete game to take the win for Dimond, walking four and striking out two.
And although the Twins saw their season come to end, Coz was pleased with the squad's effort Tuesday.
"I think it was a total ball club effort," Coz said. "We had strong defense. Where we lacked was two-out hitting with runners in scoring position."
Dimond 9, Twins 5
Twins 200 010 110 - 5 12 1
Dimond 000 011 25x - 9 11 2
Hull, Covey (8), Rowe (8) and Miller; Osborne and Lauwers. W - Osborne. L - Hull. 2B - Twins: Covey, Oliver; Dimond: Pritchard 2, Lauwers, Clevenger, Brown. 3B - Twins: Hull; Dimond: Partusch. LOB - Twins 10, Dimond 10.