The Wilson Rams took advantage of some wildness from Shelton starting pitcher Jared Welander in both the fifth and seventh innings and held on to beat the High Climbers 10-6 on Thursday afternoon at the Narrows 3A tournament in Lacey.
Welander would last six and one-third innings on the afternoon, walking 12 hitters in the process. Wilson starter Jared Horner survived a rocky start of his own in the first inning, walking the first two hitters while an infield error loaded the bases with nobody out. But Horner and the Rams survived, giving up only one run in the inning.
The Rams’ offense, meanwhile, could manage only two hits off Welander until the fifth, when the Shelton southpaw’s control went south. Welander walked six hitters in the inning and when the damage was through, the Rams managed to scratch out five runs for a 6-1 lead. Horner’s control would deceive him in the bottom half of the fifth, giving up four runs to trim the lead to 6-5.
But Wilson would close it out in the seventh, scoring four times with Cameron Ficca’s two-run double down the left field line being the key strike. Evan Stout relieved Horner with one out in the seventh to get the final two outs and preserve the win for the Rams.
“We gutted this one out,” said Wilson head coach Doug Rupe. “The guys fought hard, especially Horner, who did not have his best stuff today but made the big pitches when he had to.”
The win claimed the third seed to districts for the Rams, as they will play on Tuesday afternoon at 4 p.m. at Heidelberg Field in Tacoma.