Behind an error-free defense and clutch pitching, the Coupeville High School baseball team won 5-2 at South Whidbey Wednesday, March 27.
The Wolves (3-2, 4-2) will look to sweep the three-game series with the Falcons (2-4, 2-4) at home at 4 p.m. Friday.
Ben Etzell threw a complete game, striking out seven and giving up seven hits. His one hiccup came in the third when South Whidbey scored both of its runs. Key plays by his defense helped stop other budding rallies.
The Falcons had runners at the corners with no outs in the fourth. A blown suicide squeeze, ground out and strike out ended the threat.
In the fifth, after Coupeville went up 3-2, South Whidbey's leadoff hitter singled but was gunned down trying to steal on catcher Jake Tumblin.
Again, the Falcons placed their leadoff man on in the seventh. It looked like the next hitter might sneak a single up the middle, but Coupeville second baseman Drew Chan made a fine backhand stop and backhand flip to shortstop Morgan Payne to get the lead runner.
The pair team up again to finish off the Falcons. Payne scooped up a ground ball, tossed to Chan at second and Chan fired to Aaron Trumbull at first for the double play.
It took awhile for the Coupeville offense to get going. The Wolves had runners on in three of the first four innings but couldn't score. The biggest threat came in the first when Chan was thrown out at the plate.
Coupeville took the lead with three runs in the fifth. After RBI singles by Etzell and Payne, Kurtis Smith drove home the go-ahead run on a fielder's choice.
In the sixth, Etzell hit a ball in the hole with Korbin Korzan at third and Tumblin at second. The infield hit not only scored Korzan, but Tumblin raced home from second on the throw to first.
Etzell, besides getting the pitching win, ripped three hits for three RBI. Payne was 2-for-3 with an RBI, and Tumblin scored two runs and had two stolen bases.