Warriors' Meliah era begins on right foot

Dave Meliah wins his first game as WWCC head coach, but Miles evens up the day with a victory in the nightcap.

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WALLA WALLA - Walla Walla Community College ushered in the Dave Meliah era on the right foot here in non-conference baseball action Saturday.

The Warriors pounded out 17 hits to defeat Miles Community College, an NJCAA program from Miles, Mont., 10-4 in the opener to run Meliah's college head coaching record to 1-0.

Miles bounced back behind the 105-pitch, seven-plus-inning effort of southpaw Jared Christensen to earn a split with a 7-5 decision in the second game.

"Overall, I was pleased with how we swung the bats (25 hits on the day)," Meliah said. "We didn't strike out a whole lot (eight total). We made their pitchers work."

Kyle Sani's two-run triple got the Warriors even at 2-2 in the home third of the opener.

Richie Carmichael led off the Warrior fourth with a single, and Alex Bonczyk singled Carmichael to third. Tyler Porter bounced into a double play as Carmichael scored the go-ahead run.

The Pioneers took advantage of a Warrior throwing error to score twice in the visitor fifth to regain a 4-3 lead.

Taylor Forge led off with a Warrior single in the bottom of the fifth. Forge stole second - one of four Warrior swipes on the day - was balked to third, and scored on a wild pitch.

Marc Garza capped the Warrior fifth with an RBI single and WWCC had the lead for good at 5-4.

Jake Nelson, on in relief for the Warriors, did the rest as he blanked the Pioneers over the last four frames.

Bonczyk led the Warrior 17-hit attack with a perfect 5-for-5 at the plate.

"Not a bad first game as a freshman," Meliah said of the Las Vegas native. "We knew he was going to come in and do that for us. And Jake was phenomenal."

The Warriors overcame a 3-1 deficit in the nightcap. With two outs, Jake Anderson delivered a two-run single, and Zane Hobart followed with a bad-hop RBI single as the Warriors took a 4-3 lead after four.

Brendan Phillips' two-run, sixth-inning double gave Miles the lead for good at 5-4, as Christensen and reliever, Matt Raymond, shut the Warriors down the rest of the way.

Hobart with three hits, and Carmichael with two, led the Warriors, who had some chances but left eight runners stranded.

"The only thing I was frustrated with," Meliah said, "was some of those runs getting left out there. We couldn't get a ground ball to short or a sac fly to get a guy in. Any time you leave runs out there, it will come back to hurt you."

The Warriors (1-1) host Prairie today at 11 a.m.

"Whatever happens early in the season, our focus has to be to learn from it," Meliah said of the openers. "It's a good start. We'll be better tomorrow and be better next week."

First Game

Miles 200 020 000 - 4 7 1

WWCC 002 121 31x - 10 17 1

Gold, Day (5), Sullivan (7), Morgan (7) and Brinka. Watson, Nelson (5) and Sani.

HR - none.

Hits - Miles: Capps, Cowen 3, Hortick, Phillips, Shanahan. WWCC: Carmichael 3, Binczyk 5, Hobart, Roberts 2, Sani, Anderson 3, Forge, Garza.

Second Game

Miles 030 002 011 - 7 12 3

WWCC 100 300 001 - 5 8 3

Christensen, Raymond (8) and Crawford. Staudenmaier, Jordan (5), Jacobsen (9) and Sani.

HR - none.

Hits - Miles: Semmens 2, Wilson 3, Gold, Harcharik 3, Phillips, Brinka, Capps. WWCC: Hobart 3, Carmichael 2, Anderson, Porter, Forge.

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