BOISE, Idaho - Moe Handcox pitched a complete-game three-hitter and Taylor Lemke backed him with a four-hit effort at the plate as the Walla Walla Bruins opened play in the annual Boise Firecracker Junior American Legion baseball tournament here Thursday with a 4-1 victory over the Boise Capitals.
Handcox struck out nine and walked two over his seven innings of work. The Capitals' lone run in the sixth inning was unearned.
Lemke, Handcox's battery mate, tripled and scored on Mike Lesmeister's follow-up triple in the first inning, then added three singles to spark Walla Walla's 10-hit offensive attack. Lemke's fifth-inning single drove home Handcox, who had doubled, for the Bruins' fourth and final run.
"It was pretty much Moe on the mound and Taylor, who is really swinging it well right now," Bruins coach Jason Parsons said. "Handcox was really tough. And Lemke is seeing the ball real well."
In the second inning, Daniel Lake walked, moved into scoring position when Will Parnicky reached base on an error and scored Walla Walla's second run of the game on Sean Hollenbeck's double. Then in the third, Cody Furstenberg and Lemke delivered back-to-back singles, advanced a base on Lesmeister's outfield fly ball, and Furstenberg scored on Spencer Cordeiro's infield grounder.
The victory hiked Walla Walla's season record to 17-8.
The Bruins were matched against the Boise Gems here this morning at 11:45 and will face the Twin Falls Cowboys this afternoon at 5:15. On Saturday, Walla Walla takes on the Boise Senators at 9 a.m. and the Columbia Mudcats of Nampa, Idaho, at 5:15 p.m. Sunday's trophy round games will be determined by seeding.
"It's tough competition over here," Parsons said. "We will have our hands full today for sure."
Parsons planned to send Cordeiro to the mound this morning and pegged Luke Reardon as his starting pitcher in today's second game.
Bruins 4, Capitals 1
Walla Walla 111 010 0 - 4 10 2
Boise 000 001 0 - 1 3 2
Handcox and Lemke; Wong and Peterson.
Hits - WW: Handcox 2, Furstenberg, Lemke 4, Lesmeister, Lake, Hollenbeck; Boise: Peterson, Reid, Price.