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Knights thrill Fireworks Night crowd with win over Raptors

Wednesday, July 3, Corvallis, Ore. – The Knights thrilled a sellout Fireworks Night crowd of 3,306 by edging Ridgefield 3-2 on a pleasant night at Goss Stadium.

Corvallis (25-5 all, 21-5 WCL) thus won their ninth consecutive series in the first half of the West Coast League’s South Division pennant race. They go for their fourth sweep in the series finale on July 4.

The Knights scored twice in the home fourth to erase a 2-1 deficit and the bullpen protected the slim lead the remainder of the game. Ridgefield had only three baserunners over the final six innings and neither of them advanced past firt base.

Garren Rizzo (USC) came on in the fourth, threw three one-hit innings with no walks and three strikeouts and was credited with the victory.

Kaden Segel (Portland) followed up with three more one-hit frames to earn the save. He struck out the final five batters and earned co-Washington Park Advisors Player of the Game honors.

Segel shared those plaudits with shortstop Ty Yukumoto (Pacific, pictured above), who was 4-for-4 with a run, a stolen base and six defensive chances. He was the middleman on a key 4-6-3, bases-loaded double play that ended the third inning with the Raptors scoring just once despite having three hits and a hit batsman.

Thomas Ferroggiaro (Santa Clara) had an RBI single in the first to give the Knights a 1-0 lead. Ridgefield scored once in the second and third to go in front 2-1 but the Knights replied with a decisive 2-spot in the fourth.

With one out, Yukumoto singled and scored on a triple by Blake Wilson (Washington). Wilson then scored the winning run on an RBI groundout by Kevin Takeuchi (USC).

Yukumoto raised his average from .247 to .286. Wilson had two hits, a run, a stolen base and an RBI.

The Knights conclude the first half of the season on July 4 with a 3:05 p.m. encounter at Ridgefield. Jackson Flora (0-0, 0.00) of UC Santa Barbara will pitch for Corvallis, opposite Curtis Hebert (1-0, 0.00) of Portland for Ridgefield.

The Knights are then idle until a July 7 encounter with Springfield at the Hamlin Sports Complex. Game time has been moved back to 7:35 p.m. because of the anticipated high temperatures.

Their next “home” game is July 10 vs. Yakima Valley at Dick McLain Field at Linn Benton Community College, starting at 5 p.m. The teams conclude the series with a 4 p.m. doubleheader at Goss Stadum on July 11.

Corvallis has clinched the first-half South Division championship and will advance to the West Coast League playoffs for the 17th consecutive season. The postseason starts on Aug. 10.

In other team-related news, the Minnesota Twins promoted infielder Brooks Lee (2019) to the majors on July 3. The former Cal Poly star then went 2-for-4 with an RBI against Detroit in his big-league debut.

Lee played for the Knights before his freshman year with the Mustangs and helped them capture their sixth WCL championship. He hit .342, with two homers and 30 RBIs, in the regular season then added another homer and five RBIs in the playoffs.

He was a first-team WCL all-star and was rated as the league’s top pro prospect by Perfect Game. He was the Twins’ first selection in the 2022 MLB draft after earning All-American honors at Cal Poly. He was the Big West Conference Player of the Year in 2021 and 2022.

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