Once the rain stopped Monday, Camas endured the Skyview Storm and found safe harbor after a 6-5 victory in eight innings.
The Papermakers led by one for three innings. But, in true 4A Greater St. Helens League fashion, Skyview struck for three runs in the top of the seventh to put all their hard work in jeopardy.
“It’s hard to give up three in the top of the seventh and still have the guts to come back,” said Camas head coach Stephen Short. “We have a lot of good competitors on this team. Guys who played football and experienced a lot of success. I don’t think they are fazed by too much.”
Grant Heiser and Sam Christopher reached second and third base on a couple of walks and a pass ball in the bottom of the seventh. Tanner Howington and Taylor Birchem drove them in on ground outs to tie the score and force extra innings.
Christopher, Luke Bruno and Trevor Bentley helped Camas pitcher AJ Geaslan get three quick outs. Kristian Hellberg led off the bottom of the eighth with a walk. Ryan Kempf bunted pinch runner Nate Kordenat to second base with one out.
Taylor Adams worked a 3-2 count before hitting a slow rolling grounder to the shortstop. When the throw got by the first baseman, Adams felt pretty good.
“That’s the team that knocked us out of the playoffs last year, so it was a little bit of revenge,” he said.
Camas trailed by a run when Trevor Bentley led off the bottom of the second inning with a walk. He stole second and third base, and scored on a dropped pop fly. Adams put the Papermakers up by one on a sacrifice fly. Skyview tied the score at 2-2 on a ground out in the top of the third.
A little two-out magic helped Camas reclaim the lead in the bottom of the third. Howington delivered a double and advanced to third base on a pitch that skipped away from the catcher. Bentley brought Howington home on a single up the middle.
Christopher only needed five pitches to quiet the Storm in the fourth inning. Skyview came up with a triple in the fifth. Adams then made a diving catch in left field to strand the runner at third base.
“That was a game changer,” Short said.
Heiser fielded some tricky hops at third base. The Papermakers threw a few balls in the dirt, but Bruno was able to dig them up for outs at first base.
Camas traveled to Pasco Friday, and split a doubleheader with Chiawana. After a 10-7 loss, the Papermakers won 12-2 in the second game. Bentley had three hits, including an inside-the-park home run.
On March 23, Bentley hit a ball out of the Camas park in a 10-0 victory against Hockinson.
“I wasn’t expecting it, but I got my hands inside on the ball,” Bentley said. “I let my hands and my legs do the work.”
Bentley was inspired by teammate Caleb Field’s home run the inning before.
“I was like, ‘I want to do that, too,’” Bentley said.
Camas hosts Heritage today, at 4 p.m.