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Vikings allow late surge in season opener

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Colton looked solid intitially but couldn't hold the momentum as they fell 10-4 to Vernonia last week

PIONEER PHOTO: CONNER WILLIAMS  - Colton senior Hayden Vest follows through on a pitch during the Vikings' 10-4 loss to Vernonia last week in their season opener.

Colton's baseball team looked good from the get-go in their game against Vernonia last week, but they couldn't quite keep the momentum going.

The Viks lost their season opener 10-4 despite having a last-minute home field advantage switch when Vernonia's baseball and softball teams agreed to travel to Colton due to poor conditions in Vernonia.

Colton senior Hayden Vest started on the mound for the Viks as he allowed three earned runs on the game in his four innings pitched until junior Dawson Hall took over in the fifth inning.

PIONEER PHOTO: CONNER WILLIAMS  - Colton junior Dawson Hall winds up for a pitch during the Vikings' 10-4 loss to Vernonia last week in their season opener.

Hall wasn't able to get a rhythm going, however, as head coach Bryan Woodward said he struggled with his placement, but that it will come with more experience and time.

"The pitching just wasn't there that night," Woodward said. "We have to be more aggressive at the plate and on the mound."

Colton climbed back to within one to make it 4-5 in the sixth inning, but Vernonia rallied and scored another five by the time the game was over; Woodward said they scored at least three runs with two outs in the seventh inning to stretch the lead even further.

PIONEER PHOTO: CONNER WILLIAMS  - Colton senior Ronny Woodward watches his ball fly foul after connecting during the Vikings' 10-4 loss to Vernonia last week in their season opener.

"That put us in a big hole when we got to the plate, and we got caught in a double play to end the game," he said. "We have to put the bat on ball; I think we had eight or nine strikeouts and only five hits, in addition to leaving eight on base, and we can't do that."

Colton has been forced to remain indoors for the majority of their practices due to weather, which Woodward said has been difficult.

"It's a different type of feel when it comes to hitting, not being able to use real baseballs in the gym; hopefully we can get outside and get some work in," he said.

Colton is scheduled to play Dayton at home Tuesday at 4:30 p.m., but the weather's forecast is for rain.

PIONEER PHOTO: CONNER WILLIAMS  - Colton sophomore TJ Tiano scores the first run during the Vikings' 10-4 loss to Vernonia last week in their season opener.

"Even with the loss, I still have faith in these boys," Woodward said. "We're going to have a very good season; I'm looking at the way we played the first half of that game, and if we can continue that, we'll do all right. One game doesn't make the year, but it can if we let it."


Conner Williams
Sports Reporter/News Contributor
503-829-2301 ext. 341
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