Joel Norman AppleSox Media

The Wenatchee AppleSox defeated the Edmonton Riverhawks, 8-5, in their final home game of the 2023 regular season on Sunday afternoon at Paul Thomas Sr. Stadium.

MJ Sweeney broke a 4-4 tie in the bottom of the seventh with a 2-RBI single. He added an RBI on a groundout in the third while Carson Ohland also drove in three runs in the win.

The AppleSox sit 2.5 games ahead of the Victoria HarbourCats for first place in the North Division in the second half after Victoria's loss to the Kelowna Falcons, 10-0, on Sunday afternoon. Wenatchee also has the top overall record in the entire West Coast League at 35-13, a game above the 34-14 Corvallis Knights.

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Edmonton took a 2-0 lead into the bottom of the second inning when Jayden Halloway singled in the AppleSox’ first run a batter after Nick Putnam troubled to right field with one out. They tied the game on a sacrifice fly by Ohland in the third before Sweeney reached on a fielder’s choice. Frankie Carney broke from third for home on a ground ball to the left side and beat the throw home to give the AppleSox the lead.

Austin Ohland provided insurance in the bottom of the fourth with an RBI single but the Riverhawks chipped away with a run in the fifth and another in the sixth to tie the game up before Sweeney’s 2-RBI single in the seventh with runners at second and third and the infield drawn in. Carson Ohland delivered a two-out bases-loaded 2-RBI single in the eighth to pad the lead.

The Riverhawks scored an unearned run in the ninth but could not tie the game up. Wenatchee won five-of-six games in the season series with Edmonton and have seven-of-eight meetings in the two-season head-to-head history.

Wenatchee finishes 21-6 at home for the best regular season mark at Paul Thomas Sr. Stadium in their 23-year history. The 2023 season home record surpasses a 20-6 mark in 2013 and a 20-7 record in 2012. The AppleSox also earned their eighth sweep of the 2023 season, moving out of a tie with the 2011 season for the most in a single summer.

Monday is an off day and then the AppleSox play their final six games of the regular season on the road, beginning on Tuesday night against Bellingham. The Bells took two-of-three games against Wenatchee this past Wednesday and Thursday to give the AppleSox one of their three series losses this season. Those two losses were also the only two games that Wenatchee dropped of their final 12 home games.

The 2023 WCL Playoffs begin on Aug. 8. The AppleSox will host Game 2 on Aug. 9 and, if necessary, Game 3 on Aug. 10, if they finish the regular season atop the North Division in the second half. If Wenatchee does not win the North, then it will host Game 1 on Aug. 8. If the season ended today then the AppleSox would have home-field advantage against the HarbourCats.

SATURDAY RECAP

The Wenatchee AppleSox clinched a playoff berth for the third time in the last four seasons and for the 15th time in their 23-year history with a 10-1 win over the Edmonton Riverhawks on Saturday night at Paul Thomas Sr. Stadium.

Wenatchee (34-13, 15-5 second half) is guaranteed a top three overall record in the North Division and now will look to win the second half in order to lock up home-field advantage in the first round and potentially for longer in the postseason. The AppleSox currently have the best overall record in the entire West Coast League.

Ryan Martinez (3-2) went seven strong innings in his final start of the summer to earn the victory and give the AppleSox their 12th series victory. The right-hander from Pacific struck out four and only allowed one unearned run on four hits and one walk in his sixth start of at least five innings.

Trent Liolios, Mason Persons and Jayden Halloway all drove in two runs apiece as the AppleSox struck in six consecutive innings. Frankie Carney finished 3-for-5 to extend his hitting streak to nine games. The redshirt freshman at UC Irvine has the fourth-best batting average in the WCL with a .364 mark.

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