The Oak Harbor 14U Babe Ruth baseball team was among the leaders in the region’s 13-15 league this summer and qualified for the state tournament.
Oak Harbor, however, won’t be attending the state playoffs next week because injuries and other commitments stripped the roster of enough players to participate.
Regardless, the season went “pretty good, all things considered,” according to manager Brad Gisvold.
“We had a lot of injuries this year, which definitely cost us games,” he said. “Unfortunately other sports got in the way of us being 100 percent.
“On a good note, we have a lot of talent on this team and (we) were able to watch kids step up to help out.”
Gisvold said one of the goals this summer was to teach the kids to be good players mentally as well as physically.
He noted the goal was met.
“These kids understand that with everything put together, they’ve learned what they’re capable of,” he said. “I saw kids working through struggles on their own and being successful.”
For the players to continue to grow, they need to commit to one sport at a time, he said.
“I love sports and truly believe keeping kids active and busy is the best for them,” Gisvold said. “However, the variety of sports going on while our season was still going was a huge hit.”
Gisvold and his assistant coaches, Justin Ronning, Ryan Lange and Justin Woodward, are excited to see these players move up and compete for the high school.
“We are also excited to be adding more select teams,” he said. “We want to see the baseball program grow here in Oak Harbor. The only way I see that happening is if we start getting these kids all in the same program, along with getting more games in against worthy teams.”
Team statistical leaders
for the 2018 season
Hitting: Gage McLeod, .500 (24-48); Brock Boyer, .387 (12-31); Gage Bastian, .357 (10-28).
Hits: McLeod, 24; Aiden Golden, 12; Boyer, 12; Kaito White, 12.
Runs: McLeod, 17; Golden, 15; White, 12.
RBI: McLeod, 18; Brady Towsley, 9; Jordan Ronning, 9.
Walks: Chandler Gisvold, 10; White, 10; Ronning, 8.
Stolen bases: McLeod, 13; White, 12; Golden, 7.
Fielding percentage: Ben Lockwood, .971; Boyer, .963; Golden, .950.