The Eerett AquaSox (11-2) won their fourth straight game Wednesday as they defeated the Tri-City Dust Devils (5-8) 2-0 in Pasco. Lars Huijer improved to 2-0 and pitched brilliantly in the win, which boosted the Frogs road record to 5-0 in 2013.
DJ Peterson and Phillips Castillo each drove in a run in the decisive seventh inning, and Aaron Brooks struck out two in the ninth for his second save.
Huijer’s dominant outing got off to a rocky start in the first two innings. He plunked leadoff hitter Wilson Soriano, and after picking Soriano off first, hit the next batter Alec Mehrten with another pitch. After escaping that inning, he allowed a one-out double to Ben Waldrip in the second, who then advanced to third on Huijer’s wild pitch. But the Hoofddorp, Netherlands native struck out Patrick Hutcheson and retired Cesar Galvez with a ground ball to get out of trouble.
Everett had chances to score early, but some nice defense behind Tri-City starter Johendi Jiminian shut the Frogs down. Justin Seager lead off the second inning with his first professional extra base hit, a double to right. Two batters later, Seager was thrown by Soriano trying to advance to third on a sacrifice fly by Castillo. In the fourth, Jack Reinheimer started something with a one-out single, but Peterson grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end it.
Huijer settled down after his first two innings, allowing just three men to reach base from innings three through six. Jiminian matched him out for out for the Dust Devils, retiring the side in order in the fifth and sixth innings.
In the seventh, Everett finally broke through against Jiminian, and it was the Mariners’ top draft pick Peterson who dealt the decisive blow. Jamodrick McGruder was hit by a pitch and moved to second on a Reinheimer sacrifice bunt. Then Peterson stepped in, and his double to center easily scored the speedster McGruder for the game’s first run. Three batters later, Castillo added an insurance run with an RBI single that scored Peterson from third. The inning ended when Castillo was thrown out trying to stretch his single into a double.
Tri-City nearly got the runs back in the bottom half, but Huijer held them at bay for one last frame. With Hutcheson and Galvez aboard at second and first with two outs, the Dutchman struck out Marcos Derkes. Huijer finished with nine strikeouts and one walk (although he hit three batters) in his seven inning gem. He allowed just four hits and dropped his ERA to 2.89.
The relievers from both sides dominated in the eighth and ninth inning, as no player from either team reached base in the final two frames. Min-Sih Chen retired the top of the Tri-City order consecutively in the eighth, and Aaron Brooks earned his second save by sending down the 4-5-6 hitters in the ninth. He clinched the game by striking out Ben Waldrip, the only Dust Devil with an extra base hit on the night, swinging.
The AquaSox now sit atop the NWL North Division with a four-game lead over the Vancouver Canadians. They play the Dust Devils Thursday night in the series finale and will aim for their second road sweep of the year as Thyago Vieira battles Ryan Warner.
The Frogs head back to Everett Friday for a three game series against the Spokane Indians. AquaSox 2013 season and individual game tickets are available now online at www.aquasox.com and by phone at 425-258-3673.