The Bend Elks’ season ended in a quite appropriate way Sunday evening: With the Elks scoring a lot of runs but losing after an error.
Cowlitz’s Marco Valenzuela, whose ninth-inning home run Saturday night effectively ended the Elks’ playoff hopes, provided more late heroics Sunday when his tie-breaking single to center field resulted in an error and two runs. He later scored as the Black Bears beat the Elks 13-10.
Niko Holm went 3-for-3 and Matt Kroon hit a two-run home run for Bend, which used 21 players in the final game of the season.
With only a makeup game between Corvallis and Wenatchee remaining Monday, the Elks lead the West Coast League in runs scored (356), stolen bases (95) and fewest walks allowed (188). But they also have the most hits allowed (557), most errors (102) and lowest fielding percentage (.951).
The Elks led 8-3 after the fifth inning before reliever A.J. Atherton gave up four runs on back-to-back home runs in the sixth. Hunter Breault gave up three runs in the seventh as the Black Bears took a 10-8 lead, then the Elks tied it on Kroon’s eighth-inning homer.
The Black Bears can make the playoffs if Corvallis loses its game at Wenatchee on Monday. If first-half winner Corvallis beats Wenatchee, Yakima Valley makes the playoffs, which begin with best-of-three divisional series starting Tuesday.
The Elks finished the season 26-28 overall, a five-game improvement from 2016 under first-year coach Alan Embree.
— Bulletin staff report