Caleb Fitzgerald’s single in the bottom of the seventh inning lifted the Oak Harbor High School baseball team to a 4-3 win over visiting Stanwood Tuesday, April 16.
Fitzgerald’s walk-off hit helped erase the sting of the Wildcats’ missed chances earlier in the game and helped Oak Harbor even its conference (6-6) and season (8-8) records.
The Wildcats left nine men on base – seven in scoring position – in the game but finally got the big hit when it counted most.
Oak Harbor coach Cody Anderson lauded his team’s ability to stay focused through its struggles at the plate. He also praised the work of pitchers Jacksyn Pawlowicz and Noah Miller.
Stanwood tagged Pawlowicz for six hits over the first three innings, including four in a three-run third. From there, Pawlowicz settled in and blanked the Spartans until giving way to Miller with one out in the seventh.
“Noah’s been working hard,” Anderson said. “and deserved a chance to pitch.”
Miller kept Stanwood off the board, setting up Oak Harbor’s thrilling finish.
Thomas Anderson started the seventh with a double and was replaced by pinch runner Kyto Morrow. Taylor Rummel followed with a single, moving Morrow to third. Aiden McCarthy was intentionally walked to set up a force at the plate. After a pop-out, Fitzgerald blooped a base hit just out of the reach of the charging Spartan center fielder to plate the game winner.
Oak Harbor scored single runs in the second, third and fourth innings.
In the second, Rummel singled and eventually scored on a double steal.
Noah Meffert led off the third with a walk, went to second when Donny Kloewer walked, moved to third on Anderson’s fly ball and scored on a balk.
Andrew Dixon walked to start the fourth, when to third on an error and scored on Austin Boesch’s sacrifice fly.
Rummel finished with two hits and two stolen bases, and Meffert, Anderson, Fitzgerald and Gage McLeod all added hits.