The Ridgefield Raptors got swept in the first round of the West Coast League playoffs by the Portland Pickles in a 10-6 loss on Wednesday, Aug. 9.
The Raptors had a defensive lapse in the seventh and eighth innings of the game where their 6-0 lead turned into a 10-6 deficit.
The Raptors took the lead in the first inning after Jake Tsucada, of the University of Portland, scored on an RBI double by Nick Seamons, of Lewis-Clark State College. The Raptors added four more runs in the second inning with solid hitting and a pass ball that allowed a runner to cross home. The Raptors added another run in the third, but that concluded the Raptors’ offense in the loss.
Tsucada went 3 for 5 at the plate; all hits were singles.
Brock Gillis, of the University of Portland, started on the mound for the Raptors. Gillis threw for six innings and allowed five hits and three runs with four strikeouts and four walks. He gave the Raptors a shot to even out the series with the Pickles.
Heading into the seventh, the Raptors still had a three-run lead. Ryde Edwards, whose college was not provided, took the mound in the seventh. He gave up two hits and three runs with one earned. Joseph Jasso, of Eastgate, registered the loss after he gave up four hits and four earned runs in 1.2 innings.
The Raptors earned the first half championship giving them what could have been a favorable position going into the playoffs, but coach Chris Kota noted earlier in the season that one of the Raptors’ problems was keeping players.
“It’s been tough … Guys have to get back to school, and so we’re just trying to keep a roster full and keep going,” he told the Reflector last month.
The Raptors closed out the second half of the season 15-13 after going 18-8 in the first half, just ahead of the Pickles, who closed their second half of the season with a record of 11-18 after going 17-8 in the first half.
The Ridgefield Raptors still had a historic season despite their playoff meltdown. It was the first time in franchise history they earned the first-half title and had their best overall record of 33-21.
State reps celebrate funding for improvements at Ridgefield athletic complex
Rep. Peter Abbarno threw out the first pitch at the Raptors playoff game. State and local politicians attended to celebrate the newly acquired $700,000 in state funding for improvements and more lighting at the Ridgefield Outdoor Recreation Complex.
“Well, on capital budget side, the money went toward not only facilities but lighting for some of the fastpitch fields and softball fields,” he said. “So it was part of their kind of grand plan to open it up for more games and longer seasons, obviously, because it gets darker as you get to the fall.”
“While this game is going on, look at what’s going on on the fields around,” Rep.Ed Orcutt said. “So, we’ve got soccer practice over here, and I saw some youth over here on the soccer field. So these fields are getting a lot of use. They’re providing a lot of benefit to the residents out in this area, critical for their recreation needs.”
The Raptors playoff game was Abbarno’s first time at the RORC to watch a game. He said that the environment is electric and creates tourism and community pride.
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