The Bellingham Bells beat the Bend Elks, 4-0, Saturday night at Vince Genna Stadium to maintain their spot atop the West Coast League North.
Bellingham used a fantastic effort from its pitching staff, particularly starter Cole Tucker, to earn the team’s first shutout of the summer.
It took the Bells’ offense five innings to get going, but they pushed across all four runs they’d need to win in the top of the fifth. Elks starter Gil Luna walked the bases loaded before walking Nic Sokol to force in what would prove to be the games winning run. Ahead 1-0, Guthrie Morrison scored another run with a groundout, and then Jordan Vujovich singled in two more to make it 4-0.
Tucker, who tossed five scoreless innings, shut things down in the bottom of the fifth before handing things over to the bullpen for the remainder of the game. He allowed just one hit, walked a batter and struck out six in his first start as a Bell.
Logan Hatley, Danny Garcia and Jimmy Chatfield combined to stymie the Elks’ bats for the final four innings. None of the three allowed a run or a hit to preserve the 4-0 victory.
With the Bells win to even the series, the teams will face off for the rubber-match of the three-game set tomorrow at Vince Genna Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 5:05 p.m.