(By Geno Ludwig/Chewelah Independent)
Colville holds Cougars to three hits…
After placing second in their eight-team league and earning a first round bye in the district tournament, the Chewelah Cougars exited that event with two straight losses. In those two games, they tallied only six hits and scored merely three runs.
“We weren’t playing as a team and we lost focus,” Chewelah coach Sawyer Bardwell said. “Both games were games we could have won, or even should have won. Colville is a whole different team then the first few times we played them, they are playing well as a team at the right point of the year.”
On Wednesday, they lost their final home game 7-1 to Deer Park. Then, on Friday, they were defeated 8-2 by Colville in a loser-out encounter, and their season suddenly came to an end.
Zak Kubik and Dom Coleman hammered Chewelah’s only hits against Deer Park pitcher Nathan Bouldin. Kubik hit a single into rightfield in the fourth inning that scored Ryder Robison from third base with Chewelah’s lone run in the game.
Coleman singled in the fifth inning and was stranded on third base for the third time in the game. He was walked in the third inning, sacrificed to second base by Lukas Spencer’s bunt, and advanced to third base on Carl Oman’s ground out. In the seventh Cougar at-bat, Coleman was hit by a pitch and found his way to third base, where he was again marooned.
Besides swatting only two hits, the Cougars made three infield errors, misjudged a trio of fly balls that turned into Deer Park hits, and watched three called strikes cross the plate with runners on base. Overall, it was a bad hair day for Chewelah.
Against Colville on Friday, the Cougars surrendered five hits and six runs in the opening inning and were unable to recover over the course of the game in absorbing the 8-2 loss.
Chewelah scored a run in a fourth inning rally that had the potential to score more. Jensen Holloway accepted a leadoff walk, stole second and third bases, and was batted in by Elan Krausz’s sacrifice fly. Later in the inning, Kubik walked, Gavin Parrott singled, and Zarren Nelson was hit by a pitch to load the bases. However, all three were left on base as the Cougars continued to struggle at the plate with runners in scoring position.
Chewelah’s second run was scored by Pearson Grooms in the fifth inning. He was walked, bunted to second base by Holloway, and came home on a single off the bat of Krausz.
The Cougars also had baserunners in the sixth and seventh innings who were never brought home. Kubik was walked in the sixth and Oman hit a single in the seventh.
Last week’s two losses ended an otherwise successful season for Chewelah. The Cougars finished the league season with a 10-4 record and placed four players on the all-league team, but they did not survive post-season play.
“I felt that we played really well in the regular season we had fun and played loose and did well,” Bardwell said. “With having only a few seniors we relied heavily on the juniors and sophomores to pick up the slack and they did a great job and got a lot of great experience to have moving forward.”
Full-time starters Dom Coleman and Ryder Robison concluded their career for the Cougars as they’ll graduate shortly from JJSHS
“Ryder will be tough to replace on the bump and his leadership and we will miss him,” Bardwell said. “Dom will also be missed as he has been our third baseman for years. However, our younger players coming up are eager to step into those roles and keep going and getting better. This was a good year to build off of and I am proud of all the hard work my guys put in to achieve it.”
COLVILLE 8, CHEWELAH 2
Chewelah: 000 110 0 = 2 3 2
Colville: 600 110 0 = 8 9 1
Pitching: Chewelah – Parrott, Krausz (5) and Oman; Colville – B. Flugel, Harbolt and Lewis. W-B. Flugel. L-Parrott.
Hitting: Chewelah-Parrott, Oman, Robison. Colville-Wilson 2, D. Flugel 2, Rains 2, B. Flugel 2, Butler. 2B-Wilson 2.