Sports

Dominant in all phases of play, Emeralds top Aquasox 5-3



Bolstered by an explosive offense and rock-solid pitching, the Eugene Emeralds took down the Everett Aquasox 5-3 in the second of a five-game series on Sunday.

Despite the final result, it was the Aquasox who struck first, with designated hitter Chris Torres leading off the first inning with a triple to deep right field. Torres scored one batter later, courtesy of a line-drive single from third baseman Eugene Helder. Emeralds pitcher Jesus Camargo recovered however, and swiftly retired the side.

The game fell into a lull until the third inning, when the Emeralds offense blew the game open. With two outs, right fielder Brandon Hughes ripped a line-drive double to left field. Designated hitter Jared Young followed that up with a ground-rule double, sending Hughes home and knotting up the game. After that, second baseman Jhonny Bethencourt drove a hard ground ball into left field to score Young, giving the Emeralds the lead. The Ems’ offensive barrage wasn’t finished however, and catcher Michael Cruz sent Bethencourt home with a single to right field before the Sox managed to end the inning.

Camargo delivered another round of lights-out pitching in the fourth, and then it was time for the Ems’  bats to come alive again. With Rafael Narea on first, Aramis Ademan smacked a triple up the right field line. Narea scored on the play, and Ademan was sent home on a single from Gustavo Polanco during the next at-bat. The game fell into a lull once again after the fourth, with Camargo continuing to shut down the Sox offense.

Tempers flared on the Emeralds bench in the sixth inning. With runners on first and third, Bethencourt turned what he though was a double-play on a ground ball from Helder. The umpires disagreed, and called the runner safe at second. Bethencourt was also banged up on the play, appearing to nurse his ankle in the aftermath. Emeralds manager Jesus Feliciano took to the field, lambasting the umpires for what he thought was a bogus call. Eventually, first base umpire Chris Presley-Murphy ejected Feliciano. It was his first ejection of the season. Chris Torres scored for the Aquasox, but Camargo once again recovered to end the inning without further damage.

The Emeralds wouldn’t score for the rest of the game, yet still held a commanding lead. Yapson Gomez came in to spell Camargo in the seventh, and pitched two flawless innings. The Sox managed to put another run on the board with two outs in the ninth, but Ems first baseman Gustavo Polanco snagged a low line-drive to end the game.

After the game, Bethencourt was complementary of his coach.

“You know, it feels good,” Bethencourt said. “For him [Feliciano] to get ejected like that, it shows that he has our backs.”

The Emeralds will look to extend their winning streak against the Aquasox tomorrow at 7:05 PM.

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Aaron Alter

Aaron Alter