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   Hawthorne Wolfe had two hits and three RBI as Coupeville Babe Ruth closed its season Friday with a loss at regionals. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Time to pack up the baseballs and sunflower seeds, toss the mitts and spikes in the car, and head home.

A very successful season ended on a slightly sad note Friday, as the Coupeville Babe Ruth baseball squad fell 12-7 to Miles City (Montana) in its final game at the 15U regional tourney in Portland.

The loss drops the Wolves to a still pretty remarkable 17-6.

Along the way, Coupeville went undefeated in regular-season play, finished second at the state tourney, then ventured to Oregon to face its stiffest competition.

The 10-team regional tourney featured teams from Washington, Oregon, Montana, Wyoming, Idaho and Canada. The winner advances to the World Series.

While the Wolves won’t be hanging around to play for a title this weekend, they acquitted themselves well, and Friday was a prime example.

Coupeville outhit Miles City 13-10, with eight of of its 11 players collecting at least one base-knock.

In fact, every Wolf made it safely to first base on the day, as the three players without a hit combined to walk four times.

But errors, and one bad early inning, doomed the Islanders.

Looking to close the season with a win, Coupeville scratched out two runs in the top of the first, thanks to an RBI single from Gavin Knoblich and a sac fly off the bat of Cody Roberts.

That brought around Scott Hilborn, who led off the game with a single, and Andrew Score, who walked to start off a day when he would reach base all four times he stepped to the plate.

Then, the bottom of the first hit, and everything went sideways for a bit.

Miles City racked up half its hits in the opening frame, while taking advantage of two free passes and the first two of six errors the Wolves would commit on the afternoon.

By the time Coupeville stopped the bleeding, ending the inning when third-baseman Xavier Murdy scooped up a grounder and lofted the ball into Hawthorne Wolfe’s glove at first, eight Montana runners had tapped home.

That made the rest of the afternoon a game of catch-up for the Wolves, and while they kept plugging away, they never got back closer than four runs down.

Coupeville tacked on a run in the second (a double from Sage Sharp was the big blow) and another in the third (four singles, with Wolfe picking up the RBI).

Miles City responded with two in the fourth and two in the fifth, though, stretching the lead back out before the Wolves closed the game with a seventh-inning rally.

Singles from Score, Roberts, Ashton Leland and Wolfe, who had a team-high three RBI, accounted for three runs before Coupeville ran out of outs in the game, and tournament.

Score led a remarkably-balanced lineup, collecting two hits, two walks and two runs, while Knoblich, Wolfe, Roberts and Leland all picked up a pair of base-knocks.

Sharp, Hilborn and Johnny Carlson added a hit apiece to round out the hitting attack.

Chelsea Prescott walked in both of her plate appearances, with Daniel Olson and Roberts combining for seven strikeouts while sharing pitching duties.

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Xavier Murdy piled up a hit, a walk and two runs Thursday as Coupeville Babe Ruth played at regionals in Portland. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Not all teams are created equal.

When the Coupeville Babe Ruth 15U baseball squad went to the state tourney, they had 13 players on their roster, the same boys (and one girl) who played together all season.

Now, as the Wolves fight through regionals in Portland, they have 11 in uniform, as Ulrik Wells and Drake Borden couldn’t make the trip.

Thursday’s opponent, the KWRL Centerfield Roosters, representing South Washington, are a true all-star team. The squad pulls players from Kalama, Woodland, Ridgefield and La Center, all meccas of teen sports excellence.

So, it’s not a total surprise the under-staffed Coupeville diamond dogs, despite a chippy effort, fell 14-4.

The loss drops the Wolves to 17-5 on the season, with one contest left to play.

That comes Friday afternoon, when Coupeville faces Montana in its fourth and final game in pool play.

After taking a close loss to Calgary and more lopsided defeats at the hands of Portland and KWRL, the Wolves have no hope of advancing to the semifinals portion of the 10-team tourney.

But, after picking up an unexpected run of games (it’s subbing for North Washington state champ Columbia Basin at regionals), Coupeville will return home with valuable experience from the big stage.

The Wolves fell behind early Thursday, giving up three runs in the first and six more in the second, as KWRL whacked the stuffing out of the ball.

The all-star unit racked up eight hits in just the first two frames, including a triple and a pair of doubles.

The South Washington crew finished with 13 hits before the game was called after five innings due to the 10-run mercy rule.

Coupeville plated a run in the first, another in the third, and two more in its final at-bats.

The opening Wolf run came on a nice two-out, no-one-on-base rally, as the Islanders strung together a single from Daniel Olson, a walk to Gavin Knoblich and an RBI double off the bat of Cody Roberts.

In the third, it was base-knock city, as singles from Xavier Murdy, Andrew Score and Olson brought a runner around.

Roberts was in a groove, smoking a lead-off double in the fourth for his second two bagger, but he died a lonely death on the base-paths as his teammates were unable to help him tap home.

Needing three runs to keep the game alive, Coupeville almost got there in the fifth, but came up a few inches short.

Four consecutive walks — with Murdy, Scott Hilborn (he was plunked by a wayward pitch), Score and Olson outlasting the KWRL hurler — plated one, while a sac fly from Knoblich closed out the rally.

Roberts and Olson paced the Wolves at the plate with two hits apiece, with Murdy scoring twice.

Hawthorne Wolfe, Chelsea Prescott, Ashton Leland, Sage Sharp and Johnny Carlson rounded out the active roster for Steve Hilborn’s squad.

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Daniel Olson and the Coupeville Babe Ruth baseball squad are in Portland this week, playing in the 15U regional tourney. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Stop, take a breath and then get back at it.

After a close opening game Monday, the Coupeville Babe Ruth baseball squad was roughed up Tuesday at the 15U regional tourney in Oregon.

The Wolves, who almost pulled off a wild come-back win before falling 9-5 to Calgary, were blasted 17-1 by host Portland.

Coupeville has a bye day Wednesday, then wraps up pool play with games Thursday against South Washington and Friday against Montana.

There are two five-team pools and the top two teams from each advance to the semifinals. The winner of the tourney is off to the World Series.

After finishing second at the state tourney, Coupeville got an unexpected chance to advance to regionals after state champ Columbia Basin bowed out at the last second.

While the Wolves didn’t get a hit until the fifth inning of their opener against Calgary, they used solid pitching and defense to keep the game close.

The two teams were knotted at zero until the bottom of the fourth inning, when the Canadians scratched out a pair of runs.

The bottom fell out for a moment in the fifth, as Calgary put together three extra-base hits to slap five runs on the board, running its lead to 7-0.

Coupeville, which got its first hit when Johnny Carlson slapped a two-out single in the fifth, finally came alive in the sixth.

Peppering four hits (base-knocks courtesy Scott Hilborn, Hawthorne Wolfe, Andrew Score and Chelsea Prescott) and collecting four walks (thanks to the eagle-eyed Daniel Olson, Gavin Knoblich, Carlson and Xavier Murdy), the Wolves put up five runs of their own.

Calgary escaped the inning, though, and added two runs in the bottom of the sixth to stretch the lead back out.

Olson, who struck out three in five innings on the hill, whacked a one-out single in the top of the seventh, but that was it for offensive fireworks.

Game two? The less said probably the better, as Portland crunched 13 hits, while Coupeville had a solitary base-knock.

It was a big one, though, as Score drilled a two-out RBI triple in the top of the fifth and final inning, plating Olson, who had walked and stolen second.

Coupeville’s only other base-runner was Cody Roberts, who eked out a third-inning walk.

As the Wolves prep for the second half of pool play, they sit at 17-4 on the season.

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Chelsea Prescott and her Coupeville Babe Ruth baseball teammates have been given a second chance to advance to regionals, if they can raise money for travel expenses. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

So, the season might not be over just yet.

The Coupeville Babe Ruth baseball squad, which finished 2nd at the state tournament, has been offered a chance to advance to regionals after Columbia Basin bowed out.

The state champs, who edged the Wolves 2-1 in a best-of-three series, won’t have enough players available to make the trip to Portland, Oregon for the July 23-28 event.

The winner at regionals advances to the World Series in Longview, WA Aug. 10-27.

With Columbia Basin down, Coupeville, which posted a 17-2 record this season, is next team up, provided it can finance the trip.

Parents and coaches are scrambling, with just a couple of days to raise funds to cover travel expenses, and launched a GoFundMe Tuesday night after the news broke.

If you’d like to help the Wolves play on, pop over to:

https://www.gofundme.com/5tvx6bs

The players you would be supporting are:

Drake Borden
Johnny Carlson
Scott Hilborn
Gavin Knoblich
Ashton Leland
Xavier Murdy
Daniel Olson
Chelsea Prescott
Cody Roberts
Andrew Score
Sage Sharp
Ulrik Wells
Hawthorne Wolfe

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Gavin Knoblich had two of Coupeville’s three hits Saturday in the Babe Ruth state championship game. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

The dynasty rolls on.

After two close games Friday, Columbia Basin crushed Coupeville 14-2 Saturday in Ephrata to win the Babe Ruth baseball state title.

Having taken the championship series 2-1, Columbia Basin captures its fourth-straight crown in the 13-15 age group, and fifth in sixth years. It now advances to regionals in Portland, Oregon.

Coupeville, which finishes the season at 17-2, heads home after its best season in program history.

Under the guidance of coach Steve Hilborn, the Wolves were perfect in regular-season play before splitting their first two games with Columbia Basin.

They lost 3-2 in eight innings to open the tourney, then won 6-2 in the Friday nightcap.

Saturday’s game, though, was over fairly quickly.

Columbia Basin jumped on the Wolves for four runs in the first, another four in the second and six more in the third.

The champs were super effective in all aspects of the game Saturday, raining down 13 hits in the first three innings, while also taking advantage of three Coupeville errors and six walks.

The Wolves chipped away for a single run in both the second and fourth, but that was it as their bats short-circuited for the first time in three state playoff games.

The first run came home when Gavin Knoblich singled, moved to second when Andrew Score eked out a walk, then stole third and home.

Knoblich, who will be a junior at CHS this fall, also played a big part in his team’s second run, rapping an RBI double to plate Sage Sharp, who led off the fourth with a walk.

Coupeville’s only other hit on the day came courtesy Johnny Carlson, who lashed a third-inning single.

Xavier Murdy, Cody Roberts and Chelsea Prescott shared mound duty for the Wolves.

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