Ben Ruff put the Bells up early with the team’s first home run of the season in the second inning. Midway through the game the Bells found themselves trailing by three after giving up four runs in the fifth inning. Bellingham fought hard, loading the bases in the sixth and seventh innings, but left the bases loaded in the sixth and grounded into an inning-ending double play in the seventh.
The Bells again loaded the bases in the eighth inning and designated hitter Brady Locker belted a 1-1 pitch out of the park to put Bellingham up by the final score of 5-4.
Starter James Wise struck out six Black Bears and allowed just three hits in five innings on the mound, but gave up four runs and walked four; he was relieved by Jimmy Reed who picked up the victory after pitching 2 2/3 innings for the Bells.
Ruff, who opened the scoring for the Bells, moved from third base to the mound to toss the final 1 1/3 innings for Bellingham and pick up his first save.
The win moved Bellingham to 5-3 on the season while keeping the Black Bears winless in their first season of West Coast League action. The same two teams return to Story Field Wednesday for the second game of their current three-game series. First pitch for Wednesday’s game is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. and all the action can be heard live with Bells radio announcer Greg Talbott at www.BellinghamBells.com.