Strong start, strong finish gives Wolves win | Softball

Jae LeVine scampers on the base paths at South Whidbey Friday. - Ben Watanabe / South Whidbey Record
Jae LeVine scampers on the base paths at South Whidbey Friday.
— image credit: Ben Watanabe / South Whidbey Record

Using big innings to start and finish the game, the Coupeville High School softball team earned its second win of the season, both at the expense of rival South Whidbey, with a 9-5 win in Langley Friday, April 4.

The Wolves scored four runs in the first and seventh innings, committed no errors and received a strong pitching performance by MaKayla Bailey after a rough beginning to ground the Falcons.

In the first, Madi Roberts walked, stole second and scored on Bree Messner's single. Messner moved up on a passed ball and scored on a two-out single by Maddi Strasburg. Emily Licence walked and both runners advanced on a passed ball. Strasburg scored on an illegal pitch and Licence was plated by Monica Vidoni's RBI single.

South Whidbey responded with its own four-run first.

The Falcons slashed two singles and three doubles to score the four runs before being halted by a double play when Strasburg snared a fly in center and doubled off the runner at second.

South Whidbey took the lead with a single run in the second inning on two hits. Strasburg again ended the inning with a strong throw, this time nailing a runner trying to stretch a single into a double.

An inning later, the Falcons had runners at second and third with one out, then Bailey shut the door. She retired 12 of the next 13 hitters, finishing with an eight-hitter, four strike outs and two walks.

Coupeville tied the game with a run in the fourth. Roberts singled, Bailey doubled and Hailey Hammer singled in the run.

After three scoreless innings, the bottom of the Coupeville order got things going in the seventh. With one out, Tiffany Briscoe walked and Vidoni reached when the Falcons failed to get an out on a fielder's choice. Jae LeVine was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Roberts doubled in two runs, Messner followed with a sacrifice fly for another and Bailey finished the scoring with a single.

"We played a clean game defensively with no errors," said co-coach David King. "We made all of the routine plays and just played solid all game. This has been a point of emphasis this week, make the routine plays.

"Offensively everyone in the line up contributed. We showed patience and we walked six times and had two hit by pitches to go with our 10 hits."

Roberts, Messner, Bailey and Strasburg each had two hits; and Hammer and Vidoni had one apiece. Those with hits each had at least one RBI, and Bailey's and Roberts' doubles were Coupeville's first extra-base hits of he season.

Coupeville (2-3, 2-3) goes to Everett at 3 p.m. Tuesday, April 8, for a doubleheader with Archbishop Murphy (3-2, 4-2).

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