A record setting crowd of 2,122 people were in attendance at Joe Martin Field Thursday night to watch the Bellingham Bells defeat the Corvallis Knights, 6-5 in 10 innings. Nate Causey won the game for the Bells with a walk off double in the bottom of the 10th inning to finish off the three game sweep.
The Bells got off to a quick start off of Corvallis starter Max Beatty in the bottom of the first inning. Bells shortstop Des Santos led off the inning with a single and then was sacrifice bunted to second by Andrew Ely. Two batters later, Bells DH Nate Causey lined one into center field to bring in Santos and give the Bells a 1-0 lead. Causey advanced to second on a wild pitch and then was brought home on a Derek Atkinson double to give the Bells a 2-0 lead after one inning.
The Knights would add a run of their own in the top of the second on an RBI single from Alex Michaels to cut the Bells lead to 2-1. The Bells came right back with two runs of their own in the bottom of the second. Bells leftfielder Jake Peevyhouse worked a lengthy 10 pitch leadoff walk to start the inning. Rouric Bridgewater followed up with a single and was thrown out at second trying to stretch it into a double. Joe Winterburn reached on an infield single which brought home Peevyhouse to give the Bells a 3-1 lead. Two batters later, Andrew Ely brought home another run on a sacrifice fly to give the Bells a 4-1 lead after two innings.
Bells starter Davis Engel pitched a strong 5 2/3 innings only allowing that second inning run. Keith Zuniga relieved him and had some trouble in the top of the seventh inning. Corvallis led off the inning with back to back hits from Alex Foulon and Nate Blackham. With one out, Zuniga hit Caleb Whalen with the pitch to load the bases for Greg Mahle who lined a single into center field scoring two runs to cut the Bells lead to 5-3.
The Bells had two bases loaded chances in both the seventh and eighth innings but failed to increase their lead. In the bottom of the ninth Bells reliever Karl Myers came on to try and save the victory. Myers gave up a leadoff single to Connor Hoffman and then walked Caleb Whalen to put two on with no outs. Myers retired the next two batters, and with runners at second and third with two outs Nick Torres drilled a single to center field to bring both runs in and tie the game, 5-5.
The Bells had a chance to win the game in the bottom of the ninth after Johnny Farmington doubled with one out but was stranded at third base. Myers stayed out to pitch the 10th inning and kept the game tied and gave the Bells another shot to win. In the bottom of the 10th Andrew Ely led off the inning with an infield single. Jarel Lewis reached on a fielder’s choice and then advanced to second on a wild pitch by Corvallis pitcher Greg Mahle putting him in scoring position. Then Nate Causey drilled a ball into the right-centerfield gap for a double which brought Lewis around to score and give the Bells a 6-5 walk off victory.
There was a fantastic fireworks show after the game which marked the end of one of the most memorable nights at Joe Martin Field in a long time. We want to thank everyone for coming out tonight and we hope we can have many more nights like this the rest of the season.