Standing in the River Ridge Hawks’ way of clinching their first regional baseball appearance since 2010 was Kole Milyard and the North Kitsap Vikings on Saturday night.
As Hawks coach Chad Arko said, “we got handcuffed” and were unable to generate offense on the basepaths.
Led by the Vikings’ ace on the mound, North Kitsap shut out River Ridge, 5-0, to earn a regional berth at Kitsap County Fairgrounds, sending the Hawks to the consolation bracket of the Class 2A West Central District baseball tournament.
The Vikings took a quick 2-0 lead in the first inning, then tacked one on in the third and two more in the fifth. The Hawks, meanwhile, didn’t get their lead off runner on base until the fifth inning.
“We played from behind every inning,” Arko said.
The day began with an 11-9 win over Tyee after trailing 5-2 entering the bottom of the third before a two-out, three-run rally jumpstarted by Brayden Anderson’s RBI double. It was part of four consecutive innings with runs by the Hawks.
That set up Ben Maratita, River Ridge’s ace, in the nightcap against the Vikings (18-3), champions of the Olympic League for the regional berth. Maratita threw well in his start on the mound, Arko said, with three of the five runs earned on seven hits. Maratita and Brendan Black also had two hits apiece to lead the Hawks’ offense.
The Hawks (9-13) now must win two games to make regionals, starting with Wednesday’s game against 2A South Puget Sound rival Washington, a team which River Ridge swept during the regular season.
“That’s what I’m always worried about,” Arko said. “You can’t overlook anybody.”
Two 8-inning games for Rams: North Thurston had not one, but two extra-inning games Saturday.
A 9-8 eight-inning loss to Columbia River meant the Rams were greeted with Class 3A Narrows League rival Foss in an elimination game. After the Falcons scored five runs in the sixth to tie the game, the Rams scored a run each in the seventh and eighth innings for a 6-5 win to keep their season alive in the 3A West Central/Southwest bi-district baseball tournament.
The Rams scored the game-winning run after Griffin Peppley tripled and scored on a groundout by Noah Murski in the eighth inning. The Rams managed a single in the bottom half, but couldn’t get the runner home.
Josh Congdon went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and Emilio Romero was 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI. In the team’s loss to Columbia River, Jake Harn was 2-for-5 with three RBIs.
Congdon also went five innings on the mound against Foss, allowing two earned runs on five hits.
The Rams will play Sumner at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Auburn Mountainview in another consolation game.
Capital, Shelton split in 3A: Despitelosing their morning games, Capital and Shelton remain alive in the consolation bracket of the Class 3A West Central/Southwest bi-district tournament.
Following a 4-1 loss to Sumner, Capital rebounded with a 12-6 win over Hazen at Kelso High School. Mitchell Doolley (4-for-5, 2 runs) and Caleb Child (4-for-5, 2 runs) led the Cougars’ offense. Zach Cusack and Tanner Johnson added three hits apiece.
With the game tied at 5-all in the fourth, Johnson’s two-out RBI single to third scored Doolley for the go-ahead run to make it a 6-5 game, which gave Capital the lead for good. Hazen committed eight errors in the game.
Shelton, after its 2-0 loss to Auburn Riverside in Kent, bounced back with a 16-6 (6 innings) win over Prairie, scoring five runs in the sixth inning to blow open a close game.
Rainier in 2B consolation, NWC out: Rainier’s 9-2 loss to Adna puts the Mountaineers (13-8) in the Class 2B District 4 consolation against Toutle Lake at 4 p.m. Tuesday at Adna. Northwest Christian had its season end at 9-8 overall following a 6-3 loss to Wahkiakum in a play-in game.