In a cold, driving rain at Sitka's Moller Field, the Juneau-Douglas High School baseball team used a strong pitching performance to outduel Sitka on Wednesday, 9-1.
Crimson Bear pitchers Evan Scandling, Zach Kohan and Greg Smith combined for a three-hitter to shut down the Wolves. On offense, Juneau did not have many hits but took advantage of 12 walks issued by the Wolves' pitchers.
"We had an off-night at the plate, but solid pitching and pretty solid defense in tough conditions," Juneau assistant coach Mark Hickey said.
The Crimson Bears are now 9-1 overall, 9-1 in Region V. The Wolves fell to 2-9 in the region and overall.
Sitka opened the scoring in the bottom of the second with one unearned run, and Juneau tied the game in the top of the fourth.
"Sitka gave us a battle," Juneau coach Jim Ayers said. "They came out to knock us off."
The Crimson Bears broke the game open in the fifth with six runs. Dylan Hickey was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to bring in what would turn out to be the game-winning run. Later in the fifth, Jake Dutton hit a 2-RBI single. Dutton scored two runs in the game.
Juneau added two more runs in the seventh inning.
Hickey and Ayers commended the Bears' pitchers. Kohan struck out five of the six batters he faced in relief, while Scandling picked up the win.
"Evan worked out of a jam in the second that could have been a lot worse," Hickey said.
Greg Smith closed out the seventh for Juneau after catching for the first six innings.
Ayers said the higher pitching mound on Sitka's field kept hitting down; the Crimson Bears failed to get any multiple-base hits.
"A pitcher has a definite advantage here - but it goes both ways," he said.
Juneau plays Ketchikan today at 2:30 p.m. On Friday the Crimson Bears face Ketchikan again at 2:30 p.m., followed by Sitka at 5:30 p.m. They close the weekend series with a game against Kayhi at noon on Saturday. All games, except for the 5:30 p.m. Friday match, will be broadcast locally on AM 800 KINY.
Juneau can clinch a state tourney berth with a win in any of its remaining games this weekend, or if Ketchikan loses any of its other weekend games.
The Juneau junior varsity beat Sitka on Wednesday - also by a score of 9-1.
CRIMSON BEARS 9, WOLVES 1
Thursday's varsity game from Sitka's Moller Field
JUNEAU-DOUGLAS 000 160 2 -- 6 5 1
SITKA 010 000 0 -- 1 3 3
Juneau-Douglas -- Scandling, Kohan (4), G. Smith (7) and G. Smith, Cadiente (7). Sitka -- Loucks, Way (5) and Stockel. WP -- Scandling. LP -- Loucks. Sv -- None. 2B -- None. 3B -- None. HR -- None.