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Posts Tagged ‘Chase Anderson’

Swinging hot bats, Central Whidbey pounded out 10 hits Wednesday as it beat Sedro-Woolley 10-1 in the district playoffs. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

The season rolls on.

Overcoming slashing rain and a muddy field at Oak Harbor’s Windjammer Park Wednesday, the Central Whidbey Little League Majors baseball squad kept its playoff dream alive.

Two days after whiffing 16 times in a loss to South Whidbey in the opener of the District 11 tourney, the Wolves bounced back, shredding Sedro-Woolley 10-1.

Along the way, Central Whidbey racked up 10 base-knocks and eight walks, while its pitchers combined to hurl 11 strikeouts.

The win lifts CWLL to 11-7 on the season, and guarantees the team at least one more game.

Central Whidbey returns to Oak Town Thursday, when it will play either Anacortes or North Whidbey in a 6 PM loser-out game.

Anacortes was up 21-9 in the top of the sixth Wednesday when darkness halted play in that game.

Another victory Thursday, and the Wolves play Friday against either South Whidbey or Burlington-Edison.

The tourney will crown a champ either Saturday or Sunday, with that team punching its ticket to the state tourney.

There were two big questions hanging in the muggy air Wednesday night.

One, would it rain and how much?

The answer, of course it would rain – this is summer on Whidbey Island, and a lot, with sheets of rain turning the area around home plate into a pig’s dream and forcing one extended rain delay and several mini-breaks.

The second question, would Central Whidbey’s bats regain their pop?

The answer, of course they would.

Chase Anderson spanked three hits, Jack Porter and John Rachal walloped two apiece, while Landon Roberts, Alex Smith, and Johnny Porter each added a base-knock.

Central Whidbey collected three doubles, with the biggest blow, by far, erupting off the bat of Rachal.

Swinging out of his shoes, he laced an RBI double which took a big skip, then slammed off the wall in straight-away center field, wowing both his appreciative fan club and the normally unflappable pros in the press box.

And yet, while the final score looks like a blowout, the game was actually a nail-biter until the bottom of the third inning.

Or, about an hour-and-a-half after the game’s first pitch.

Central Whidbey had scraped out a run in the bottom of the first and another in the second to stake itself to a 2-1 lead.

The first Wolf to skid across a very-slick home plate was lead-off hitter Jack Porter, who smoked a single to left-center, then took second thanks to an obstruction call on Sedro’s first-baseman, who wandered in a daze right into the baseline.

With Porter rocking back and forth on the bag, teammate Chase Anderson promptly popped a one-out RBI single to right to get the first click of the night from the scoreboard operator.

While Sedro escaped further damage, ending the inning by nailing a runner at the plate, the damage had been done.

The off-Islanders got their only run in the top of the second thanks to a very-wet ball squirting away from Wolf fielders on one wild ‘n wacky play, but starting pitcher Camden Glover was otherwise untouchable.

He whiffed three in two innings of work, while his catcher, Johnny Porter, threw out both runners who dared to try and run on his cannon of an arm.

Walks to Glover and Jordan Bradford, packaged around a Rachal single which managed to evade three different Sedro fielders, juiced the bags in the bottom of the second, before Aiden O’Neill effectively won the game by sacrificing his body.

Taking a pitch off of his heel, his free pass the hard way forced in Central’s second run, the only other one it would need on the night.

Not that the Wolves were content to stop with a 2-1 lead, instead putting together an 11-batter, six-run outburst in the third.

It started with Johnny Porter skedaddling down the line to first after a dropped third strike, and ended with a bang-bang play at the plate which was one of the few things to go Sedro’s way during the inning.

In between, there were a couple walks, hard choppers which produced runs from Marcelo Gebhard, Smith, and Anderson, and a dramatic two-run double to left from Jack Porter.

Tack on two more runs in the fourth, thanks to Rachal’s big-time blast, and an RBI single from Smith, and the game came dangerously close to being called short thanks to the mercy rule.

And mercy was something Central Whidbey didn’t display, as its pitchers methodically shut down Sedro after the one lucky run.

Glover (three K’s) was followed to the (muddy) mound by Bradford (1), Jack Porter (3), Roberts (2), and Anderson (2) and all kept the ball popping into the mitt.

Along with Wolf catcher Johnny Porter gunning down runners left and right, Central Whidbey got solid defensive plays from first-basemen Roberts and O’Neill.

Roberts stretched out his frame to its last possible inch to snag one throw coming in hot and low.

After replacing him at first, O’Neill made a nice play on a wicked grounder, knocking the skidding ball into the mud, then plucking it out and beating the madly-scrambling hitter to the bag.

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   Landon Roberts and the Central Whidbey Little League Majors baseball squad knocked off South Whidbey Tuesday in their first game. (Photo courtesy Jon Roberts)

Can’t stop the winning.

Day two of Central Whidbey Little League play was a lot like day one, with the home town squad successfully defending its diamond.

Monday, both CWLL Minors softball and baseball knocked off North Whidbey teams, and Tuesday, it was time for the Majors baseball squad to get its moment in the spotlight.

Fueled by sharp pitching from Chase Anderson and Levi Pulliam and timely hitting from Landon Roberts, Central Whidbey nipped the South Whidbey Shockers 3-1.

CWLL fell behind 1-0 in the early going, then chipped its way back into the game thanks to “excellent base running.”

Central Whidbey benefited from being willing to get a little black and blue as well, with several players getting aboard thanks to being plunked by South Whidbey pitches.

Peyton Caveness, Jonny Porter and Roberts scored for CWLL, while Anderson and Pulliam were spot-on while working on the mound.

The duo combined to whiff seven batters, with Pulliam notching five of those K’s.

“All in all I am very proud of our young Majors team,” said Central coach Jon Roberts. “We knew we would be facing stiff competition after we took the South Whidbey Pope Tourney last spring as Minors.

“We were really excited to see how the boys reacted to much faster pitchers,” he added. “For the most part we did OK, but there is room to improve!”

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   Chase Anderson had three hits, including a homer, as Central Whidbey won the title game of the Henry Pope Memorial Tournament. (Stephanie Pulliam photos)

“Hey, we just won! Everyone attack the photographer!!”

   The Central Whidbey coaching staff, which, unlike its rivals, remembered “Don’t use up all your pitching before the end of the tourney.”

Kyrese Simpson intently studies the pitcher for weaknesses.

Da champs.

Hard-earned hardware. (Jon Roberts photo)

Payback was epic.

Avenging its only loss of the season, the Central Whidbey Little League Minors baseball squad scorched host South Whidbey 11-0 Thursday to win the Henry Pope Memorial Tournament.

Coupeville’s sluggers entered the night thinking they would need two wins to claim the title.

But after dismantling their rivals, who had nipped them 3-2 Tuesday, Central Whidbey got an unexpected bit of good news.

South Whidbey’s coaches had gambled, and lost, burning through their pitching staff, and had to forfeit Friday’s game, which would have pitted the two squads in a winner-take-all finale.

With the wins, one by bat and one by brain (Central coaches still had several limber, and eligible, pitching arms at their disposal), CW improves to 17-1.

After winning five of six in the week-long, double-elimination tourney, Coupeville’s hardball warriors now move on to All-Star play.

But Thursday night, that was a far-off thought, as everyone was still locked firmly in celebration mode.

“Without a doubt the best single season I have ever been a part of as a player or coach,” said Jon Roberts.

The title game started off with a classy note, as Teresa Pope, the wife of the late, great South Whidbey coach for whom the tourney is named, threw out the first pitch.

As soon as it took the field, Central Whidbey was in lock-down mode.

A run in the first, another in the second, then the floodgates opened in the third, with four Coupeville players stamping on home plate.

The big blow was a thunderous home run off of the bat of starting pitcher Chase Anderson.

It was especially sweet as South Whidbey had intentionally walked Landon Roberts to get to Anderson.

Why they did that, especially on a day when he rapped out three hits, adding two singles to his long ball, will remain a mystery.

Five more runs in the top of the fourth put Central Whidbey up by 11, giving it the chance to end the game early thanks to the mercy rule.

Not that Coupeville showed much mercy, as relief pitcher Levi Pulliam closed out the game with a bang.

The final out came courtesy a “a tag that looked like a linebacker placing a forearm shiver on the runner attempting to steal third.”

Central Whidbey finished with 10 hits, with Jordan Bradford crunching a pair of singles to back up Anderson’s three-hit assault.

John Rachal, Peyton Caveness, Roberts, Mike Robinett and Johnny Porter rounded out the hit parade with a single apiece.

Anderson and Pulliam combined for five strikeouts on the mound, while Kyrese Simpson, Alex Smith and Jack Porter joined their teammates in bringing home championship medals.

The 11-man squad is led by coaches Craig Anderson, Jon Roberts, Sandy Roberts, Michael Bradford, Josh Fiske, Ryan Lang and Jeff Porter.

Scorekeepers Adam Caveness and Jen Porter round out the brain trust.

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