The stay was short, but they should be back.
The Central Whidbey Little League major softball team (ages 10-12) lost its first two games at the state tournament in Poulsbo over the weekend and was eliminated.
The Hammerheads fell 13-1 to host North Kitsap Saturday, June 29, and 13-2 to Northeast Seattle Sunday.
“This group will be so fun to watch these next six years, and I have a good feeling they’ll be back at the Little League state tournament a couple more times before they start their high school campaign,” coach Fred Farris said.
“The girls really fought hard and did really have a tough draw, facing two of the top four teams in the tournament.
“Nerves definitely showed in their first experience at the state tournament, but they never stopped fighting. Their sportsmanship shined throughout the tournament and I really couldn’t be prouder.”
Central Whidbey, unlike the other teams in the tournament, draws its players from one team. The other clubs at state are all-star squads made up of players from multiple-team leagues.
North Kitsap 13, Central Whidbey 1
Nerves got the better part of the Hammerheads, according to Farris.
North Kitsap, a veteran team which finished fifth in the state tournament last summer, tallied 11 runs in the first two innings, but only two were earned.
“The girls really started to settle in on defense in the middle of the third inning, but it was too late,” Farris said. “They really impressed me with their resolve, never getting down emotionally and continuing to fight.”
The Hammerheads also struggled on offense, failing to register a hit.
Savina Wells walked twice and stole two bases. Allison Nastali walked and Mia Farris reached on a dropped third strike for Central Whidbey’s only other base runners.
On defense, Wells “pitched well against a hard-hitting team,” according to Fred Farris, and catcher Brionna Blouin gunned down to runners attempting to steal.
Northeast Seattle 13, Central Whidbey 2
Wells led off the game with a triple and scored on Mia Farris’ ground out to give Central Whidbey the early lead. Wells’ rap, however, would be the only hit for the Hammerheads in the game.
Northeast Seattle responded by scoring four runs in the bottom of the first to take the lead for good.
Central Whidbey’s second run came in the second inning when Chloe Marzocca reached on an error, stole a base and scored on a passed ball.
Taylor Brotemarkle and Jada Heaton each walked for Central Whidbey.
Central Whidbey put the ball in play, striking out only four times, but couldn’t find any holes.
“Seattle made some amazing defensive plays that really put a damper on any potential rallies,” coach Farris said.