Heat swept in first series

<p>Devin Oil Heat pitcher Michael Gossler throws from the mound during the the Heat's first game of the American Legion baseball season Saturday at Weber Field. The Heat will play in the Central Washington Legion "A" division with players ages 14-15. The Spuds, made up of players ages 16-17, kick off their season at 1 p.m. Saturday at Weber against the Kennewick Dusters.</p>

The Devin Oil Heat opened up Central Washington Junior “A” American Legion play on the wrong end of a four-game set with the Walla Walla Griz on Saturday and Sunday.

The Heat dropped a pair Saturday at Weber Field, 7-5 and 17-5, then traveled to the onion city and lost 11-10 and 8-0.

Devin Oil took the Griz to nine innings in the opening game Sunday, but the home team plated a pair of runs in a come-from-behind win.

Devin Oil led 4-1 after its half of the fifth inning, but after that the game was turned on its head.

Walla Walla plated four runs in the home half of the fifth, then the Heat came back with five in the sixth.

The Griz countered with four more to tie the game at 9-9.

Devin Oil’s Jay Lindeman and Sean Smith each had a pair of hits in the contest.

In Saturday’s first game, Lindeman and Smith each drilled run-scoring singles in the fourth to give the Heat a 5-4 lead, but the team couldn’t hold it and the Griz stole the Heat’s home and season opener.

Devin Oil’s Michael Gossler was solid on the mound through four innings of work after having a rough second inning where the Griz scored three runs.

The Heat will take part in the Griz Invitational tournament this weekend in Walla Walla.

The Heat, made up of players ages 14-15, was added into the Central Washington junior Legion league last year and will compete against teams from Moses Lake, Hanford (Richland), Walla Walla and league newcomer — but old foe — the Pendleton Pepsi DiamondJaxx.

They will also host a Father’s Day Weekend Tournament.

The second American Legion team in Hermiston is the Hermiston Spuds. The team played as a Senior (“AAA”) team last year, but this season they will play as a junior team and compete in Oregon Zone 1.

The Hermiston Shockers, the youngest team last season, is no longer part of the program.

Hermiston High School head coach Brent Mattson, along with varsity assistant Kirby Warner, are coaching the Heat.

Hermiston HS assistant Doug Taylor is heading up the Spuds this season, which features area players that are age 17 or younger.

The Spuds kick off their season at 1 p.m. Saturday, hosting the Kennewick Dusters at Weber Field.

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