PRESCOTT - Close rivalries elicit high emotions, and DeSales capitalized on them to pick up a sweep over Waitsburg-Prescott in Southeast 2B baseball action at Prescott's field Tuesday.
The Irish won the first game, 4-3, and the second, 7-2, for the sweep, improving their league record to 7-1 and 15-2 overall.
"Those were two good ballgames," said DeSales coach Kim Cox. "They were both played well. Right now our league is pretty balanced, and that anybody can beat anybody on any given day."
W-P finished its league schedule with the losses, with a 5-7 overall record and fourth-place standing.
"We were outplayed," said W-P coach Dustin Snedigar. "We kept it close with good pitching in the first game. In the second, we had some errors that led to runs, but we battled and kept the first close, and that's all you can ask."
DeSales' pitcher Victor Mata and W-P's Zach Bartlow battled through the first three scoreless innings, when Bartlow gave up just one hit.
But by the fourth, DeSales was ready to open it up. Tommy Gregg singled and Mata doubled to bring him home, then Tim Caudill singled to bat Mata in - all with no outs.
W-P clamped down on the next four batters, with two flyouts, a walk and a strikeout to end the inning, DeSales up 2-0.
And W-P scored a run of its own in the bottom of the stanza. Dalton Estes walked then Tre Brannock got a solid double to deep left field to bring him home, closing the gap to 2-1.
Estes wouldn't make it past third base as the inning closed.
The Irish came out again in the fifth with runs in mind and at the top of the lineup. Travis Haen singled, Joe Duehn sacrificed, then, with two outs, Mata hit another RBI double to bring Haen home.
Caudill moved Mata to third, then Logan Hoeft singled to bring him home, ending DeSales' scoring.
W-P scored two in the top of the sixth when Bartlow walked and Estes singled, then Brannock singled Bartlow home and Hamilton hit a fielder's choice to get Estes in.
Brannock's single was a near-disaster. The line drive came straight back at Mata, who raised a glove to deflect it from his face. It hit his right shoulder instead.
Although Mata was floored, he scrambled back up to complete the game.
But the two runs weren't enough, and DeSales closed the inning with three outs, then the game with three up, three down, for the 4-3 win.
Mata closed game one with 11 strikeouts, while Bartlow had six.
But W-P's bats were tired by game two, a 7-2 loss.
W-P managed just three hits in the game, with only one of those before the sixth inning.
"We've got to come out ready to play," Snedigar said of his team. "Whether that's a Saturday morning or a Tuesday afternoon, we need to get our minds right. A baseball doubleheader is different than basketball or football. I don't know what they're eating between games, but this isn't the first time we've come out flat."
The Irish charged to a 5-1 lead after the fourth inning, with W-P only managing one hit in the third. W-P's lone run came off a walk, then Estes advanced around the bases on a wild pitch and error. A Hamilton sac brought him home.
The game wasn't without its bumps, when both a DeSales coach and fan were ejected in the fifth inning while DeSales held a 6-2 lead.
W-P looked like they were ready to make a game of it in the bottom of the sixth. Reliever Estes saw four batters in the top of the sixth, then Bartlow got his team moving with a single at the top of the card in the sixth, then Hamilton posted W-P's third hit of the game to bring him home.
Up 6-2, DeSales scored once more early in the seventh, both batters getting to base on walks.
Haen ended scoring with an RBI double.
W-P's pitching trio of Purdin, Estes and Hamilton gave up 13 walks on balls or hit batters, while DeSales' Hoeft had six strikeouts and three walks.
"We didn't help ourselves with the errors," Snedigar said. "They had a lead of four or five runs, and it should've been a 2-1 ballgame. They put the ball in play and we don't handle it defensively."
Cox was pleased with his team's hits.
"We made quality contact with the ball throughout the day," he said. "Even in the first game we hit some hard balls and line drives."
Mata and Hoeft also threw quality games.
"They located extremely well," he said.
DeSales has two more league doubleheaders before wrapping its regular season. They play at Asotin Saturday.
W-P's SE2B season has ended. It hosts Touchet in a single nonleague game Thursday.
DeSales 4, W-P 3
DeS 000 220 0 - 4 7 1
W-P 000 102 0 - 3 3 1
Mata and Duehn; Bartlow and Brannock.
Hits - DeS: Haen, Gregg 2, Mata 2, Caudill, Hoeft. W-P: Estes, Brannock, Hofer.
DeSale 7, W-P 2
DeS 004 110 1 - 7 8 3
W-P 000 101 0 - 2 3 4
Hoeft and Duehn; Purdin, Estes (4), Hamilton (7) and Zuger.
Hits - DeS: Haen 2, Duen, Gregg, Caudill 2, Hoeft, Lindgren. W-P: Zuger, Bartlow, Hamilton.