A day after missed opportunities sunk the Oak Harbor High School baseball team in a 6-4 home loss to Marysville Getchell, the Wildcats bounced back to blank the Chargers 6-0 Wednesday, April 3, in Marysville.
The schools complete their three-game series at 4 p.m. Friday, April 5, in Oak Harbor.
Tuesday's loss was full of "what-ifs" for the Wildcats.
Oak Harbor had a runner on third with no outs in the first and fifth innings but couldn't score. Then it had men on first and second with one out in the second but didn't advance the runners. Finally, it loaded the bases with no outs in the third and managed only one run.
After a hit and two walks loaded the bases, Marysville Getchell scored on a sacrifice fly in the first.
It took Oak Harbor only two pitches to tie the game in the bottom half. Grant Schroeder laced the first pitch up the middle for a base hit, then Brent Mertins drilled the second pitch over the left fielder's head for a triple.
Oak Harbor didn't get another hit in the game, and Mertins became the first stranded runner.
Though Oak Harbor had only two hits, it had plenty of runners as three Charger pitchers combined to walk 10 and hit two.
Getchell scored two in the second and three in the third to lead 6-1. Relief pitcher Daniel Wolfe, who entered in the second, faced the minimum number of hitters over the final four innings. The only baserunner, who walked in the sixth, was erased trying to steal.
Oak Harbor scored one in the third when it loaded the bases with no outs. Jack Richter was hit by a pitch and Cory Cameron and Mike Maletto walked. David Kusnick drove a sacrifice fly to right for the run.
The Wildcats added two more in the seventh. Richter walked, Maletto was hit by a pitch and Kusnick walked to fill the bases. One run scored on Andrew Snavely's ground out and the other on a wild pitch.
In Wednesday's win, the highlight was Richter's gem. The senior right hander blanked Marysville Getchell (2-5, 3-5)with a five hitter, striking out two and walking none. He yielded only one hit after the third inning. He also led the offense with three hits.
Oak Harbor (2-5, 3-7) scored the only run it needed in the top of the first thanks to the wildness of the Charger starter. With one out, Mertins was hit by a pitch, Richter singled, Maletto walked and Cameron forced in the run after being hit by a pitch.
The Wildcats added single runs in the third and fourth. Mertins boarded on an error in the third, moved to third on Richter single and scored on Maletto's ground out.
In the fourth, Anthony Stewart singled, Snavely was hit by a pitch and Schroeder singled in Stewart.
Singles by Richter, Maletto and Kusnick loaded the bases in the sixth. Clay Doughty walked, pushing in a run, and Stewart hit a sacrifice fly for another.
Oak Harbor finished the scoring in the seventh when Stewart doubled after Kusnick's single.
Schroeder, Mertins, Kusnick and Steward each collected two hits.