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Romero, Kennel team up, lead Knights to 8th straight victory

Saturday, June 18, Corvallis, Ore.  – Future Pacific-12 Conference opponents Kiki Romero and Ely Kennel helped the Knights make quick work of the Yakima Valley Pippins in Game 2 of their West Coast League series before a crowd of 1,787 at Goss Stadium.

An incoming Arizona Wildcats after playing at Arizona Central JC, Romero (pictured, above) hit the Knights first Goss Stadium homer. An incoming Oregon Stater, Kennel doubled, singled, stole a base and drove in two.

It all added up to a 6-1 Corvallis victory in a speedy 2:32 before a crowd of 1,603. The Knights (8-1, 8-0 WCL) thus won the series and improved to 5-0 vs. the Pippins in 2022. Corvallis still has not trailed at any point this season and has outscored its opponents 54-12.

A first baseman who starred for the Knights in 2021, Romero’s blast was his first of 2022 and cleared the right-field fence to the left of the scoreboard. He now has four RBIs for the series and five for the season.

The right fielder, Kennel knocked in one run with a first-inning groundout and another with a third-inning double. He went 2-for-4 with his fourth multi-hit game, raising his team-best average to .421 (8-19).

Second baseman Zander Darby (UCSB) and center fielder Logan Johnstone (Gonzaga) had the Knights other RBIs.

Corvallis starter Kaden Segal (LBCC) allowed one hit in five scoreless innings, with two strikeouts and one walk. It was his second-consecutive start with five scoreless innings, and he faced only 17 batters, two over the five-inning minimum.

In the last three games, starters Segel, Jesse Barron and Duke Brotherton have combined for 15 shutout innings. They have retired 45 of 49 opposing batters in that span.

Corvallis starting pitchers have not allowed a run in seven of eight appearances. They have permitted just two earned runs in 38.2 innings, an 0.47 ERA.

Right-handers Josh Emanuels (Washington), Ian Lawson (OSU), Matt Ager (UCSB) and Ryan Brown (OSU) made their 2022 debuts; each pitched one inning to close it out.

The series concludes at 5:05 p.m. Sunday. Portland righty Joey Gartrell (0-0, 7.71) set to make his first start of the year for the Knights.

The games between the 2021 WCL Championship Series opponents begin a nine-game homestand that also features three contests against Walla Walla (Tuesday-Thursday) and Bellingham (Friday-Sunday).

Box score

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