Oilers aim for Div. 1 playoffs

Hood River’s Carson Oil-sponsored Oilers baseball team continued its summer schedule in the Oregon Junior State Baseball Association Division I league while focusing on its goal to qualify for the upcoming state playoffs starting July 25.

Despite a couple of recent setbacks, including a 5-0 road loss to Gladstone in their last game June 27, the Oilers remain as one of the top contenders in the 10-team Portland area league. The top three teams qualify for the playoffs.

Oilers at home

The Oilers will host the eight-team Firecracker Tourney July 5-8 at Traner Field


On Friday, the Oilers meet Scappoose at

9 a.m. and David Douglas at 7 p.m.

The Oilers, guided by head coach Adam Howell and Don Lariza, will have an excellent opportunity to solidify their position in the standings during the final two weeks of the regular season, with all 11 remaining games at home.

Howell, the Hood River Valley baseball junior varsity coach, is guiding the Oilers now in place of head coach Erich Harjo, who is on a temporary hiatus. “My expectations for the team is to reach the playoffs. That’s our goal and we’re hoping to be one of the top three teams at the end of the regular season. We’re in a very competitive league, but we’ll see how things go and hope for the best.”

In his June 25 debut, Howell nearly helped guide the Oilers to a come-from-behind home win over Gladstone. After falling behind 7-0 after two innings, the Oilers chipped away at the margin. Aided by a Gladstone error, the Oilers got on the scoreboard in the third on an RBI sacrifice fly by Patrick Harvey, making it 7-1.

“We came out a little rusty after having about five days off, so that’s probably why we had a slow start,” said Howell. “We weren’t ready to play right away and we made some defensive mistakes. One good thing about these guys is that they don’t panic after falling behind. They came back and gave themselves a chance to win and that’s all we could ask for.”

The comeback continued in the fourth, highlighted by Ryan Ward’s (2-for-4) RBI double to the centerfield fence, as the Oilers trimmed it to 7-3. Gladstone added a run in the top of the fifth, making it 8-3. The Oilers then sent 11 batters to the plate while facing four Gladstone pitchers and they erupted for six runs in the bottom half of the frame to take the lead.

Kellan Duffy (3-for-4) ignited the rally when he singled with a grounder up the middle, followed by Ward’s second double. They both scored on Dallas Buckley’s (1-for-2) RBI double. After Montana Kurahara walked and Willie Ishizaka (1-for-4, RBI) reached base on an error, the bases were loaded. Cole Osborn was then hit by a pitch to earn an RBI, making it 8-6. An RBI sacrifice fly by Alix Jimenez followed by a two RBI single by Brooks Maddy (1-for-2) putting the Oilers in front 9-8.

“Eventually, when the regular baseball season (at HRV) kicks off next year, I feel like I’ll have more of a leadership role on the team,” said Jimenez, an incoming HRV senior along with Olson. “I’m just trying to get used to playing on a team with lots of younger players. We have a real young squad that’s improving and we should have a pretty good team next year.”

Gladstone capitalized on Oiler miscues (walk, hit batter, error) to knot it 9-9 in the sixth and then pulled out a 10-9 victory with a run in the seventh. Pitcher A.J. Swalko silenced the Oiler bats as he worked the final two and one-third innings and allowed just one hit to help lead Gladstone to the win.

Olson, the Oilers’ starting pitcher, scattered seven hits, with two walks and four strikeouts in four innings pitched. Jimenez relieved Olson in the fifth and he struck out four, walked two and didn’t allow a hit and Duffy pitched the seventh inning. The Oilers had an impressive offensive attack as they outhit Gladstone 12-9.

“Whenever I get a chance to pitch, I just try to give it all I’ve got,” said Jimenez. “We were hitting pretty good, so I felt like we should’ve come up with the win. We have to learn to maintain our momentum throughout the entire game. We can’t just have one big inning and expect to win. We have to come out ready to hit the ball in every inning.”

The Oilers (5-3 league, 6-5 overall) played a 5 p.m. home contest Tuesday versus Scappoose, with results unavailable at the News press time.

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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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