Dallas hands HRV 2nd straight home setback

Untimely errors give HRV headaches

The Hood River Valley baseball team is still searching for consistency as it begins Intermountain Conference play Saturday in Bend with a double-header against the Summit Storm.

After a less than stellar outing on Monday versus La Salle — a 10-3 loss that was riddled with defensive miscues — the Eagles looked to get back on track Thursday against Dallas.

But a number of untimely errors overshadowed an otherwise sparkling defensive day for the Eagles, who lost their second straight home game, 8-5, to fall to 3-7 in the preseason.

“We’re fielding the ball great right now,” coach Gerry Flink said. “But what’s happening is, we’re not making good throws. That’s correctable, though. The errant throws are more of a mental thing.”

Starter Jeremy Belcher, the Eagles No. 4 pitcher, had a semi-

effective outing in which he went three innings and gave up five runs. But it could have been more if it weren’t for a string of defensive gems in the second and third innings.

Belcher loaded the bases with no outs in the second, but ended up getting out of the inning on two consecutive sterling catches by center fielder Bryan Nishimoto and left fielder Kyle Maurer.

Right fielder Tony Hull got into the action in the third with an over-the-head stab, which he was able to throw into second base for an inning-ending double play.

Additional defensive help came later in the game from Belcher, who took over at shortstop in the fourth when senior Cody Wickwire came on in relief. Belcher’s backhand scoop and subsequent throw to first ended the fifth inning, and gave Wickwire his second straight 1-2-3 inning.

“If our pitchers can continue to throw strikes, we’re going to be fine,” Flink said. “We’re not where I’d like us to be with the bats, though. Our hitting will have to improve if we’re going to stay in the playoff race.”

HRV had seven basehits on Thursday, but many of them came when no runners were on base. However, Flink said that he still has confidence in his offense.

“We need to get back to playing little ball,” he said. “We’re going to bunt more and try more hit-and-runs in league play so we can create better scoring chances.”

The Eagles did most of their scoring in the final two frames against Dallas, but were able cut the lead to 5-2 in the bottom of the third. Belcher scored Pete Dills on a fielder’s choice, while head’s up baserunning by Jarrod Fogle allowed him to take third and home on wild pitches by starter Matt Dimick.

HRV didn’t get on the board again until the sixth when Heath Goin scored Belcher on a fielder’s choice. Pinch hitter Danny Newton also plunked an RBI single to center, which scored Ryan Pratt to make the score 8-4. The Eagles scored one more run in the bottom of the seventh (Dills), but it wasn’t enough.

However, despite the two home setbacks this week, Flink believes his team can make a statement at Summit.

“We believe we can come away with two wins,” he said. “It will be a good early-season measurement of where we are in this league.”

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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