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08/30/2008 2:03 AM ET
Boscan pitches Indians into playoffs
Right-hander improves to 9-1 with division-clinching win
Wilfred Boscan improved to 9-1 with a 3.12 ERA in 15 outings, including 11 starts, for the Tribe. (Spokane Indians)

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Wilfredo Boscan isn't accustomed to losing.

The 18-year-old right-hander responded to his first defeat of the season by tossing seven strong innings Friday night as the Spokane Indians clinched the Northwest League East Division title with a 4-1 victory over the Boise Hawks at Memorial Stadium.

Boscan (9-1), who was unbeaten in 13 appearances before Sunday's 5-2 loss at Tri-City, didn't blink at the pressure of pitching the Indians back into the playoffs after a seventh-place finish a season ago.

The 6-foot-2, 160-pound Venezuelan yielded a run on four hits with four strikeouts and did not issue a walk. He retired the final 10 batters he faced, getting Sean Hoorelbeke on an inning-ending groundout in the seventh to cap his performance.

"For an 18-year-old kid, he was unbelievable tonight," said Spokane manager Tim Hulett. "He was masterful. He competed really well, especially after his first loss."

Dustin Brader gave up a hit and struck out one in a scoreless eighth before Corey Young fanned two in the ninth for his sixth save as Spokane punched its first ticket to the postseason since winning the Northwest League title in 2005.

"At this level, every year is a new team," Hulett said. "The credit goes to our scouting department. They brought in a lot talented young guys, got them signed, and we developed a great team chemistry."

David Paisano went 3-for-4 and snapped a 1-1 tie with a three-run homer in the fifth as the Indians (48-23) won their fifth in a row and improved the league's best road mark to 26-10.

"There was a bit of relief [after Paisano's homer] because it gave us a lead," Hulett said. "But we don't panic too much around here because we're a very resilient team."

Boise's Christopher Carpenter (4-1) absorbed his first loss in nine outings, surrendering four runs on eight hits and a walk with three strikeouts over 4 2/3 frames.

Ryan Flaherty ripped an RBI single in the fourth for the second-place Hawks (41-30).

John Torenli is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.