By HERB SWETT
For the Keizertimes
The Volcanoes bounced back July 4 from a rough road trip to beat Hillsboro 5-1 in the first game of three that followed ceremonies to honor veterans.
Starting pitcher Jose Reyes showed that he could do his job well enough for his first win of the season to be overdue. His teammates, especially Travious Relaford, gave him more offensive support than usual.
A crowd of 5,613, second largest in Volcanoes history, saw Salem-Keizer take a 3-0 first-inning lead over the Hops. Johneshwy Fargas was hit by a pitch from Ryan Doran, who became the losing pitcher, Tyler Hollick singled to left field, and Christian Arroyo reached first base on an error by shortstop Justin Gonzalez, loading the bases.
Will Callaway walked, forcing Fargas home. Fernando Pujadas doubled to left, driving in Callaway.
Hillsboro’s run came in the second. Grant Heyman hit an infield single and went to second on a high throw by shortstop Arroyo. Bennie Robinson grounded out with Heyman taking third. A sacrifice bunt by Gonzalez brought Heyman home.
Reyes pitched one-hit ball through five innings. In the top of the sixth, Jordan Parr walked with one out and Robinson singled to right center. However, Reyes retired the next two batters, one with his only strikeout of the game.
In the Volcano sixth, Relaford doubled to right, went to third as Fernando Pujadas grounded out, and scored on a wild pitch by.
The seventh was a 1-2-3 inning for both clubs. Dusten Knight relieved Reyes to start the eighth and gave up two singles but no runs.
Dustin Loggins took the mound for Hillsboro in the eighth and began by walking Arroyo. Will Callaway singled to right center, and Relaford advanced both with a sacrifice bunt. A wild pitch scored Arroyo.
Heyman led off the ninth with a Texas League double to center, but Knight retired the next three batters earning his first save.
“We’ve been playing a really good team in Vancouver,” Volcano manager Gary Davenport said of the series that had just ended. “We’ve been pretty good against our division.”
“Hitting support helped,” Reyes said through a translator. “I was able to pitch more relaxed.
“We’ve been slowly getting better,” Relaford observed. “We had a long bus ride from Vancouver, and we just looked forward to playing at home.”