Aggressive base running supplied the winning run in the final inning as the North Whidbey 11/12 baseball team stayed alive with a thrilling 9-8 win over South Skagit Wednesday, July 3, in the District 11 tournament in Sedro-Woolley.
North Whidbey challenges Anacortes in another loser-out game at 4 p.m. today, July 4, in Sedro-Woolley.
North Whidbey zipped to a 6-2 lead after two innings. South Skagit tied it with a four-run third, and the two teams entered the final inning tied at 8.
In the top of the sixth with one out, Brandon Wells was hit by a pitch and Timothy Steinke walked. Both moved up on a wild pitch. After an out and with two strikes on the hitter, Wells bolted for the plate, was struck in the back by the throw and scored the winning run.
Donny Kloewer, who took over on the mound in the fifth, held the lead in the sixth. The first hitter popped out and the second singled. A strike out and ground out ended the threat.
Things started well for North Whidbey with a three-run first. Trevor Sheils singled and advanced to third on a pair of throwing errors. Jakob Dailey reached on a bunt that scored Sheils. Franklin followed with a home run over the centerfield fence. Wells tripled but was left stranded.
A two-out, two-run double by South Skagit made it 3-2. A single appeared to score the tying run, but the runner was sent back for leaving early.
North Whidbey made it 6-2 in the second. Will Moyes singled and was replaced by pinch runner Joe Dixon. Errors off the bats of Sheils and Dailey allowed two runs to score. Franklin singled to put runners at the corners. A throwing error on Franklin’s steal of second resulted in the third run.
Four walks, a single and an error helped South Skagit tie it at 6.
Both teams scored two runs in the fourth. Dixon walked and Wells tripled in pinch runner Kloewer. Wells scored on Kamren Mebane’s ground out. Ethan Cosper doubled but a strike out ended the inning.
South Skagit made it 8-8 on two singles, a walk and fielder’s choice, setting up the dramatic sixth.
North Whidbey threatened in the fifth but lined into a double play with two on.
Kloewer put South Skagit down in order on only six pitches.