Sports

Fastpitch squad ends drought

"The drought for Oak Harbor's fastpitch team ended on what appeared to be a gray day. When the Wildcats took the field Wednesday, a steady drizzle was falling.But the drizzle ended, the sun popped out and so did the Wildcats' bats. Oak Harbor, which struggled to get a hit in three recent games, unloaded against Sehome and swept the visiting Mariners 7-3 and 11-10.We played well. We hit the ball. We had girls who hadn't got hits all year get hits. That was kind of neat to see, Oak Harbor coach Denny Zylstra said.The two victories snapped a nine-game losing streak for the Wildcats. They were Oak Harbor's first wins since March 29 when the Wildcats defeated Squalicum of Bellingham 11-5 in a nonleague encounter.It's been a long year. This was a good deal for the kids. I think they were feeling a little better about things, Zylstra said. They were real jubilant after the games.After the second game, a parent of one of the players awarded the team by treating them to ice cream at Baskin-Robbins.The Wildcats entered Wednesday's first game having been shutout for 25 straight innings. In the previous three games, Oak Harbor mustered just one hit in 21 innings, and two opposing hurlers threw perfect games against the Wildcats.I think the girls are better because of those games. They learned what it's like to face outstanding pitching, Zylstra said.After getting blanked in the first two innings of the first game, the Wildcats broke through with four runs in the third to take a lead they never relinquished. Pam DeMoor, hitting .480 on the season, stroked a two-run triple for the Wildcats and teammate Sabrina Riggs had two hits and drove in a run.In the second game, Oak Harbor punched out four straight hits in the bottom of the eighth inning to beat Sehome. Jen Berg, who went 4-for-5, drove in the game-winning run.Oak Harbor had some defensive lapse in the doubleheader, committing a total of 16 errors. However, there were times when the Wildcats sparkled on defense.We turned doubleplays and threw out some runners at the plate, Zylstra said. There were a lot of positive things.Oak Harbor, 3-16 on the season and 2-11 in 4-A Western Conference action, finishes the season Monday at home against Cascade."

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