By NR Staff • 

Grizzlies split two games with rival Newberg

Tuesday, McMinnville lost 4-1 in Newberg. It was the third loss in a row by the Grizzlies going back to the start of spring break.

Zach Rhoads led off the top of the first inning Tuesday with a single to right field. Adrian Uscanga bunted Rhoads to second base, but Gage Gubrud struck out. Blake Egli followed with a double, scoring Rhoads.

The Grizzlies managed just one more hit the rest of the game. Rhoads singled in the top of the fifth.

Newberg scored four runs in the bottom of the third inning. McMinnville pitcher ran into trouble, loading the bases with one out. He walked in the first run, and a ground ball to shortstop scored Newberg’s second of the inning. The Tigers scored two more runs on a single to left field.

Springer pitched all six innings for the Grizzlies. He allowed four runs (two earned) on five hits and walked four batters.

Newberg’s Cole Miller also went the distance. He held the Grizzlies to one run on three hits. He walked one batter and struck out 14.

The Grizzlies (5-6) rebounded from Tuesday’s game with a 5-1 win Wednesday at home vs. the Tigers. Hits were again at a premium — Mac had five — but Mac was able to score the most runs it had in more than a week. Rhoads, Gubrud, Egli, Garret Adams and Cameron Fox each had a hit Wednesday for the Grizzlies.

Gubrud earned the win on the mound for Mac. He pitched seven innings and allowed one run on six hits. He struck out six batters.

Both teams were scoreless in the first two innings of the game, but Mac finally broke through in the bottom of the third inning. David Brosius reached first base on a dropped third strike by Newberg, and Rhoads tried to bunt Brosius over. Newberg’s catcher committed a throwing error, allowing Rhoads to reach second and Brosius to make it to third base. A balk by pitcher Nick Auld scored Brosius and moved Rhoads to third base.

Adrian Uscanga was the next batter and hit a hard ground ball to the shortstop, which missed played the ball. Uscanga reached on the error and Rhoads scored, giving Mac a 2-0 lead. Gubrud walked, and another balk by Auld moved Gubrud to second and Uscanga to third base. Egli executed a perfect safety squeeze bunt that scored Uscanga, giving Mac a 3-0 lead, and Adams finished the scoring with an RBI fielder’s choice to first base that scored Gubrud.

Thus ended the bottom of the third inning in which Mac scored four runs without producing a hit.

Newberg scored on an RBI fielder’s choice in the top of the fourth inning with two outs, but Gubrud wouldn’t allow another run the rest of the way. He allowed one single in the top of the fifth inning, and retired the last seven batters he faced — including four by strikeout.

The Grizzlies play Forest Grove (4-6, 0-2) today. The Vikings lost twice to Hillsboro this week. The Spartans and Tualatin lead the Pacific Conference after the conclusion of the first series of the conference schedule at 2-0. Tigard, Newberg, Mac, and Glencoe are all 1-1 in the conference, and Forest Grove and Century are 0-2.

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