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Miscues hurt Wildcats in district opener | Baseball

Oak Harbor shortstop Brent Mertins scoops up a slow roller and gets ready to fire to first. - Jim Waller / Whidbey News-Times
Oak Harbor shortstop Brent Mertins scoops up a slow roller and gets ready to fire to first.
— image credit: Jim Waller / Whidbey News-Times

Glacier Peak committed fewer mistakes to earn a 2-1 win over Oak Harbor in the opening game of the district baseball tournament Saturday, May 4, in Snohomish.

Oak Harbor (11-10) will now have to win three straight to grab the third berth out of district for the regional tournament.

Moving on won't be easy. The Wildcats travel to Wesco North champion Maryville-Pilchuck at 4 p.m. Tuesday for a loser-out game. The top-seeded Tomahawks (16-5) were upset 4-2 by fourth-seeded Meadowdale (10-11) Saturday.

Oak Harbor lost all three regular-season meetings with Marysville-Pilchuck this season.

The Oak Harbor/Glacier Peak contest was well pitched, but the pitchers had a hand in the mistakes that led theĀ  game's runs.

After three-and-a-half scoreless innings, the Grizzlies scored in the bottom of the fourth. Jack Richter walked the leadoff hitter, and the Grizzly stole second, moved to third on a fly to right field and scored on a passed ball.

Oak Harbor came back to score its one run in the top of the fifth and could have possibly had more.

Andrew Snavely led with a walk and moved to second when Grizzly pitcher Tanner Braun threw wide of first on a pick off attempt. Snavely was replaced by a pinch runner, who was thrown out at third trying to move up on a pitch in the dirt.

Clay Doughty walked and moved to third on Glacier Peak's second error of the inning (the only two GP errors in the game) and scored when Braun balked.

In the bottom of the fifth with one out, Glacier Peak strung together two hits to put runners at the corners. The winning run scored on a wild pitch by reliever Grant Schroeder.

Braun finished with a two-hitter, striking out eight and walking five. He escaped a one-out, bases-loaded jam in the first with a pair of strikeouts.

Richter and Schroeder combined to throw a four-hitter.

Oak Harbor coach Tyson VanDam said, "I'm really pleased with the way we pitched. We pitched well enough to win."

He was upset by the inability of his team to bunt. Twice with leadoff hitters aboard, Oak Harbor was unable to bunt runners into scoring position.

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