BEND - The American Legion baseball season ended for the Hermiston AAA Heat Saturday with an 11-9 loss to The Dalles Hustlers at the Area I Tournament.
The Hustlers scored five runs in the seventh inning to advance in the tournament, spoiling what coach Dean Kegler said had been a strong effort by relief pitcher Billy Gates.
Mario Aroyo started the game for Hermiston and Kevin Skogley ended on the hill for the Heat.
The Dalles literally walked away with the win, receiving six walks in the seventh inning.
"It became difficult, in the seventh inning, to get anything to fall our way," Kegler said.
Hermiston trailed 3-0 in the second, then 6-2 in the top of the third inning.
Chuy Elguezebal got the bottom of the third started for the Heat with a walk. Jared Rasmussen stroked a three-run triple that eventually led Hermiston to a 7-6 lead.
Brad Adams singled and Michael McCabe hit a two-run home run in the fourth inning, increasing the Heat lead to 9-6.
Nick Gutierrez had a double and a single to lead Hermiston.
"I'm extremely proud of these boys," Kegler said. "They made a strong charge at a district tournament championship."
Kegler said Hermiston gelled well considering its players came from several towns. Kegler said the season was a success.
"Overall, these kids played hard and never quit," he said.