Corvallis starting pitcher Angel Landazuri pitched eight shutout innings with 10 strikeouts and the Knights scored two early runs to top the Bells, 2-0 on Friday, July 18 at Joe Martin Field.
Bellingham (28-8, 26-8 WCL) was shutout for just the second time in 36 games. Despite the loss, the Bells continue to hold a 10.5 game lead in the WCL West Division standings.
Landazuri (University of California Riverside) struck out the first four Bellingham hitters he faced, and had five of his 10 strikeouts in the first two innings. After Landazuri retired the first nine hitters he faced, left fielder Lou Della Fera (University of Maine) singled to left field for the Bells' first hit of the night.
Bellingham threatened to score later in the inning after first baseman Danny Miller (Cal State Chico) reached base on an infield single with two outs. Della Fera went from first to third on the play -- a slow, high-chopping ground ball in the infield grass on the first base side of the infield. However, a flyout ended the inning and the Bells were unable to get another runner into scoring position for the rest of the game.
Corvallis scored its first run in the 3rd inning on a sacrifice bunt attempt, following a leadoff double. Corvallis shortstop Michael Lucarelli (University of Portland) bunted down the third-base line, but the throw to first went over Miller's head, scoring the runner from second. Right fielder Dalton Kelly (University of California Santa Barbara) scored Lucarelli with a sacrifice fly later in the inning to put Corvallis up 2-0.
Miller finished 2-for-4 to lead the Bells. Della Fera was 1-for-4 and catcher Ian Yetsko (Oakland University) finished 1-for-3. Though the Bells have dropped two of the last three games, Bellingham still holds the best record in the WCL and has won 20 of its last 23 games.
Bellingham takes on Corvallis in the rubber match on Saturday. It's the final game of a six-game homestand and first pitch is set for 7:05.