Kitsap Slugs its Way to Victory Over Bellingham

Offense was the name of the game from Joe Martin Field as the Kitsap BlueJackets defeated the Bellingham Bells 11-3 Friday.

Jake Suddreth (3-2) was in the drivers seat on the mound for Kitsap (2-2), working three quick innings against the Bells (0-1) before Kitsap scored.

Bryce Steckler started the top of the fourth with a triple and scored on a Joey Galeno sacrifice fly. With two outs, Marten Pauwels singled and Tony Ortiz doubled to score Pauwels. Chris Caffrey lined a single to score Ortiz to give Kitsap a 3-0 lead after four.

The runs continued to flow in the top of the fifth when Daniel Lopez led off with a single against Bells starter Joey Matulovich (2-1). After Jack Stronach lined out, Kitsap drove five straight base hits. Steckler singled to put runners at the corners, and Luke Stampfl brought in Lopez on a single. Galeno singled to load the bases. He was followed by a Pauwels single to score Steckler and give Kitsap a 5-0 lead.

Ortiz laced a single to score Stampfl, and Caffrey added a single of his own to score Galeno. With two runs in scoring position, Omar Maldonado singled up the middle to score Pauwels and Ortiz to push Kitsap ahead 9-0.

Bellingham would not go down without a fight, starting off the bottom half of the inning reaching base on a BlueJackets error hit by Gunner Schubert. Austin Shenton walked, and was followed by a Matt Ruff double to score Schubert. Shenton scored on a past ball, and Andru Cardenas grounded out to second to score Ruff to close the gap 9-3.

The BlueJackets pitching staff buckled down the rest of the way, not allowing a hit over the final four innings. Joe Siegel, Garrett Smith and Bryce Peterson combined for two innings of shutout relief of Suddreth, who finished with seven innings pitched. He did not allow an earned run.

Brian Way entered for the Bells in the top of the ninth and Kitsap added insurance. Galeno singled and was followed by an Ortiz double. Galeno scored on a balk by Way, and Caffrey notched a sacrifice fly to score Ortiz. The BlueJackets pulled ahead 11-3 and held on for the victory.

Matulovich was tagged with the loss for the Bells after tossing four and one-third innings. He struck out six and did not issue a walk.

Ortiz was a home run shy of the cycle, slugging two doubles, a triple and a single to finish 4-5 on the night.

The rubber match is set for Saturday at 7:05 between Kitsap and Bellingham. Listen to BlueJackets radio with the pregame show starting at 6:50 pm PT. Follow @BlueJacketBall on twitter for the latest on the BlueJackets.

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