The Chewelah Cougars scored most of their runs during a three-inning snow storm at the beginning of Monday afternoon’s home opener on their way to a 9-5 non-league win over the visiting Deer Park Stags.
Six hits produced five runs in the bottom of the second inning as the Cougars took an early 5-0 lead. Dustin Olson triggered the fireworks at the plate with a leadoff double into right-centerfield. Caleb Wiebe’s single into right field scored Olson.
A single into left field by Cordell Bean moved Wiebe to second base, and Kyle Connall tomahawked a high pitch into right field to bring Wiebe home. His run gave Chewelah a 2-0 lead.
Carson Coleman hit a ball that the Deer Park third baseman could not handle, loading the bases for the Cougars, still with no outs. A single off the bat of Andrew Hansen drove in two more runs. Another single by Derek Smith made it 5-0.
Deer Park scored four runs in the top of the third inning, narrowing the Cougar lead to one run at 5-4. It stayed that way until the bottom of the fourth inning. That is when Chewelah loaded the bases with Taylor Nicholas on third, Derek Smith on second, and Brandon Smith on first.
Dustin Olson’s single brought home two Cougar base runners. The third one scored on an errant throw back to first base. Chewelah now had an 8-4 lead with three innings to play.
Derek Smith scored Chewelah’s final run of the game in the sixth inning, racing home from third base on a wild pitch after getting on base with a double into centerfield.
Coleman was the game’s closer. He went to the mound in the top of the sixth inning and sent Deer Park batters back to the dugout in order twice. In the seventh inning, the Stags did score an unearned run, but it did not affect the final outcome of the game.
Wiebe started the game on the mound for the Cougars and threw the first three innings. He struck out six batters. Nicholas threw the fourth and fifth innings, striking out three. Coleman threw the final two innings, notching two strikeouts, to earn the save.
Altogether, Chewelah pitchers struck out 11 Deer Park batters. They also had some problems locating some of their off-speed pitches, resulting in five hit batters.
The Cougars swatted nine hits, including doubles by Derek Smith and Olson.
The game was originally scheduled to be played in Deer Park, but the Stags’ field was not yet playable.
This Saturday, the Cougars will host a league doubleheader against Kettle Falls, beginning at 11:00. Then, they go to Lakeside on Tuesday for a single game against the Eagles, starting at 4:00.
Chewelah 9, DP 5
Cougars: 0 5 0 3 0 1 x = 9 9 3
Stags: 0 0 4 0 0 0 1 = 5 5 5
Cougar pitching: Caleb Wiebe, Taylor Nicholas (4), Carson Coleman (6) and Cordell Bean. Win –Wiebe (1-0). Save – Coleman (1).
Cougar hitting: Derek Smith 2, Caleb Wiebe 2, Dustin Olson 2, Cordell Bean, Kyle Connall, Andrew Hansen. 2B – Derek Smith, Olson.
By Geno Ludwig, The Independent Staff