Thursday, August 4, 2005
By DAVE LEDER
News staff writer
BEND — With Saturday’s steamrolling of Bend High, the Hood River Valley softball team did its part to set up a Tuesday showdown with The Dalles-Wahtonka for first place in the Intermountain Conference.
But the Eagles-Indians did HRV an unexpected favor on Saturday, losing game one of their double-header at Mountain View by a score of 2-1.
TDW’s first loss of the season, combined with the Eagles’ two wins of 15-0 and 6-0, put HRV all alone atop the league standings at 6-0 (9-5 overall).
Even better, it lessened the Eagles’ burden as they zero in on their first-ever IMC championship.
“None of us could believe it when we heard The Dalles lost,” said HRV senior second baseman Ashley Delepine, who went 3-4 with three RBI’s in last Saturday’s game one. “We still need to beat them, but now we know they are beatable.”
However, Delepine and the Eagles aren’t letting their 6-0 start in league play go to their heads. Even after pounding out 31 hits in two games against Bend, this team still knows there is much work to be done.
“No one is too excited yet,” said junior catcher Rochelle Friend, one of six HRV players who had multiple hits in game one against Bend. “We still have to play The Dalles and Redmond twice, and anything can happen.”
Nine league games remain after Tuesday’s showdown in The Dalles. But the good news is, the HRV bats have emerged from an early-season slumber, while the pitchers — Chelsey Elliott and Lindsey Smith — have found their midseason groove.
Also encouraging, the HRV defense didn’t commit an error in either of Saturday’s games.
“Our defense has been improving, but we didn’t get that many chances against Bend because they didn’t hit the ball very well in either game,” Friend said.
Elliott held the Lava Bears to just two hits and struck out 13 in game one, giving her 27 K’s in her past two outings.
She also led the team in hitting, going 4-5 from the plate and tallying an RBI basehit.
“I’m feeling a lot more confident with my rise ball,” Elliott said of her newest pitching weapon. “Coach (Wayne) Smith has helped me a lot, and now that I have figured out the right grip, it’s starting to work pretty well.”
Lindsey Smith, the Eagles’ No. 2 pitcher, nearly matched Elliott’s dominance in game two on Saturday, picking up her fifth victory of the season by striking out four and allowing just three hits.
“Lindsey was wonderful in the circle against Bend, and located her pitches well the whole game,” said assistant coach Smith (no relation). “She had some great pitching sequences that had the hitters baffled.”
Overall, everything seems to be clicking for the Eagles thus far in IMC play. Saturday’s two shutouts represented HRV’s first two bagels of the season. Their 31 hits on Saturday (21 in game one, 10 in game two) were also a season best.
Six HRV players registered multiple hits in game one, with Elliott (4-5, RBI), Friend (2-5), Delepine (3-4, three RBI), Meghan Flem (2-4, two RBI), Katie Flory (2-3, RBI) and Kayla Monahan (2-3, two RBI) leading the way. The HRV offense continued to roll in game two, with Flory, Smith, Flem and Katie Pritchett all notching two basehits.
Despite the offensive fireworks, the Eagles knew they would have to be at their best to defeat The Dalles and their star pitcher, Sarah Clark, on Tuesday (results not yet available).
“The best competition is yet to come,” said Elliott, who will counter Clark in the circle. “The fastest pitcher we’ll see in this league is from The Dalles (Clark), so we know we’re going to have to play our best to beat her.”
Yet another highlight over the weekend came from senior catcher Katie Pritchett, who gunned down four runners at second base in game two.
“That’s one of those things she will never forget,” coach Smith said. “I’ve never seen that happen at any level, and Katie should be proud of that accomplishment.”
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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