LONGVIEW, Wash. — Lane Community College fought its way back through a series of elimination games. Unfortunately for the Titans, they ran into Alex Phillips again.
Phillips, the tournament MVP who will pitch at the University of Kentucky next year, tossed a six-hit shutout, striking out seven, to beat the Titans for the second straight time to lead Lower Columbia to a 6-0 victory over Lane in the NWAACC baseball championship game on Monday.
The victory gave the Red Devils their record 10th NWAACC baseball crown and ended a season in which the Titans recovered from a slow start to make the conference tournament for the first time since 2006.
“It was an amazing run just to get to the championship game,” Lane coach Rob Strickland said. “It was phenomenal.”
Ben Grubb went 3-for-4 and drove in four runs to power Lower Columbia (41-5).
Lane’s best chance to score came in the sixth inning, when Randy Berger and Jimmy Sanchez led off with back-to-back singles and moved to second and third on a sacrifice bunt by Shea Huskey. But Phillips coaxed the next Lane batter into a double play to end the threat.
The Titans (33-17) advanced to the title game with an 8-6 victory over Bellevue earlier Monday.
With the score tied 6-6 in the eighth inning, Kyle Hoover singled home Sanchez to give the Titans the lead for good, and then scored on an error to give the Titans a two-run lead. Andrew Schumacher went 2-for-4 and had two RBI for Lane.