WALLA WALLA, Wash. — Left fielder Jake Holcroft had three hits, two RBIs and a run on Tuesday night to lead the Corvallis Knights to a 6-3 win over Walla Walla in Game 1 of the West Coast League’s South Division playoffs.
The Knights (51-12) can clinch their fourth consecutive berth in the WCL Championship Series by defeating the Sweets in Game 2 or Game 3 of the best-of-3 series. Game 2 is set for 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Goss Stadium.
Holcroft, who led the WCL in hitting this summer with a .368 average, led off the game with a double and scored on Andy Atwood’s single to give the Knights a quick 1-0 lead.
He added a two-out, two-run single in the second inning to increase the lead to 3-0. A sacrifice fly by Briley Knight made it 4-1 in the fifth and Jake Harvey clubbed a two-run homer in the sixth for a 6-1 advantage.
Walla Walla scored twice in the seventh to pull within 6-3. Reliever Abbott Haffar pitched a scoreless eighth and closer Connor Knutson (Portland) locked it down with a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his sixth save.
Corvallis starter Tevita Gerber spaced four hits and allowed two runs over 6.2 innings. He struck out eight, walked two, and improved his overall record to 8-1 with his eighth victory in a row.