Dickson, Raptors slug way to Finals

Dodgers prospect smacks two homers, drives in four runs

O'Koyea Dickson led the league with a .603 slugging percentage during the season. (Ogden Raptors)

By David Schoenholtz / Special to MLB.com | September 11, 2011 8:46 PM

It didn't take long for the Ogden Raptors to put their offensive struggles behind them.

O'Koyea Dickson went 3-for-5 with two homers, four RBIs and three runs scored Sunday as Ogden won a slugfest against the Orem Owlz, 12-9, to advance to the Pioneer League Championship Series.

The Raptors will square off with the Great Falls Voyagers, who pounded the Missoula Osprey, 12-2, in the deciding game of the other semifinal series.

The Owlz grabbed a 5-3 lead in the third inning, but Ogden answered with five runs in the bottom half. Dickson got things started by reaching on an error, then scored on Joseph Winker's two-run single. Scott Wingo capped the rally and put the Raptors ahead for good with a three-run homer.

Orem climbed within 8-6 before Dickson took Shane Waller deep for a two-run shot in the sixth.

"I had faced him in the Divisional World Series in North Carolina," said Dickson, who was chosen by the Dodgers in the 12th round of this year's Draft. "I was just trying to get a pitch I could handle. I was fortunate enough to hit one out."

Dickson, who led the league with a .603 slugging percentage during the regular season, connected for another two-run blast of John Wiedenbauer in the eighth.

"We had a battle going," Dickson said. "He was throwing fastballs in, and I got one up and hit it out to center."

Scott Schebler matched Dickson with three hits, including a three-run homer in the bottom of the first that erased a 3-0 deficit. The Raptors collected 11 hits, including four homers, one night after Orem's Daniel Vargas-Vila took a perfect game into the seventh.

"It was a big game for the organization and all of us as players," Dickson said. "Last night was a tough one, only getting one hit. We just wanted to come out and stick with our approach and swing the bats like we know we can.

"It's been a long year for me, from fall ball to the spring season and the Division II World Series, getting drafted and playing on this team. There have been a lot of long bus rides. I'm trying my best every day and will grind out these last few games, go home for a few days and then head to the Instructional League. Getting that ring would be nice."

Pioneer League MVP Taylor Lindsey, Abel Baker and Kaleb Cowart went deep for Orem.

In Missoula, Stephen McCray (1-0) tossed five scoreless innings before allowing a triple and a single to open the sixth. By then, the Voyagers had built an 8-0 lead.

Kevan Smith and Michael Earley both homered and combined for half of Great Falls' 16 hits. Leadoff man Qualon Millender reached base five times, scored twice and drove in two runs.

Game 1 of the best-of-3 Championship Series is Tuesday in Ogden.

David Schoenholtz 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.

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