Bellingham came back from two-run deficits twice before Medford rallied for three runs in extra innings to take an 8-5 win over the Bells in the series opener on Monday, July 28 at Joe Martin Field.
Facing a 5-3 deficit entering the bottom of the 8th inning, Bellingham (32-12, 30-12 WCL) rallied to tie the game on a RBI double from first baseman Scott Heath (University of Maine). Heath sent a ball deep into the left-center field gap, just out of the reach of a diving Medford outfielder, scoring second baseman Dustin Breshears (Gonzaga University) from first base. Bellingham's first run of the inning came when center fielder Nate Anderson (Bellevue College) scored on a wild pitch.
With the game tied at 5-5, Medford sent nine hitters to the plate in the 10th inning, scoring three runs on four hits and taking advantage of one Bellingham error.
Continuing the back-and-forth trend of the game, the Bells loaded the bases in the bottom of the 10th inning with one out, but a pop out and strike out ended the threat as Medford held on for the win. Shortstop Chris Baker (University of Washington) and Breshears had back-to-back singles in the inning and Heath walked to load the bases.
Medford opened the scoring, collecting two hits and scoring two runs in the top of the 1st inning. Bellingham responded to cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the 1st inning, as Breshears doubled to deep left field and later scored on a base hit from designated hitter Danny Miller (Cal State Chico).
The Bells rallied to tie the game at 2-2 when right fielder Walker Olis (Pacific University) singled home Breshears in the 3rd inning. Breshears had singled to begin the inning and Miller followed later in the frame with a double to put two runners in scoring position.
Medford rallied with two outs to take a 4-2 lead in the 6th inning. A single followed by two walks loaded the bases for the Rogues. During the next at-bat, the Medford runner on second base was caught too far off the base on a pick-off throw from catcher Eric Webber. He headed for third when the throw from Webber went to second. However, the throw from second to third was overthrown, and ruled out of play as the ball bounced off the fence at the end of the third base dugout. Two runs scored on the play.
Left fielder Jack Klein (Stanford University) walked to begin the bottom of the 6th inning, and eventually scored on a ground out from Breshears to make the score 4-3. Medford extended the lead to 5-3 in the 8th inning when a two-out RBI single.
Miller finished 5-for-6 with an RBI to lead Bellingham, hitting two doubles and adding three singles. Breshears was 3-for-5, scoring three runs and adding an RBI.
The pre-game activities included an announcement from WCL President Dennis Koho, who was in attendance for the game. Koho announced that Bellingham will be the host site of the 2015 WCL All-Star Game.
Bellingham will face Medford in the second game of the three-game series tomorrow. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m.