Posts Tagged ‘Julian Welling’

   Shane Losey scampered home with the winning run Friday, scoring on a hit from cousin Julian Welling, as Coupeville baseball won for the sixth time in its last seven games. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

An offensive showcase it was not.

Which didn’t matter in the least to Coupeville High School baseball fans.

The Wolves didn’t get many hits Friday against visiting Klahowya, but they got them when it mattered.

Toss in a typically superb performance from senior hurler Hunter Smith, and CHS heads to the weekend on yet another high note.

Knocking off the Eagles 3-1, thanks to timely RBI base-knocks from bashers Kyle Rockwell and Julian Welling, the Wolves improve to 9-4 on the season.

More importantly, Coupeville is 3-1 in Olympic League play, setting up a first-place showdown Monday with Chimacum (4-0).

That home game kicks off at 4 PM.

Port Townsend (1-3), which recently snapped a three-year losing streak, sits in third, while Klahowya, the defending league champ, is in free-fall at 1-5.

Friday’s tilt was a pitcher’s duel from start to finish and Coupeville had the better chucker.

Smith rolled to 5-1 on the season with an 11-strikeout, two-hits, no-walks gem.

After retiring the first 10 Eagle hitters, he gave up back-to-back singles, which momentarily let KSS knot the game at 1-1.

Bouncing back quickly, Smith promptly erased the next 11 guys to step to the plate, ending the game on a true high note.

Coupeville had struck first, scratching out a run in the bottom of the second inning.

Jake Hoagland walked with one out, then stole second and third.

Perched on third, he said a silent prayer and Rockwell answered, smoking an RBI single to open the scoring.

After Klahowya ground out its run, the two teams exchanged goose eggs until the bottom of the fifth, when Welling, the human RBI machine, once again rose to the status of hero.

Gavin Knoblich eked out a walk to open things, then swapped spots with pinch-runner Shane Losey, who was ankling to run wild.

The Wolf young gun got his chance after Smith also walked to put two on with two out.

Welling, who has been torrid with the bat in pressure situations this season, smashed a two-run double to effectively end the game with one swing.

In a neat little small-town twist, the game-winning hit was struck by one cousin, and the game-winning run scored by another.

Losey’s dad and Welling’s mom are kin.

After that it was all up to Smith, with a little help from his defense (Jake Pease had a superb catch in the outfield in the early going), as the Wolves strolled home with their sixth win in their last seven games.

Joey Lippo joined Rockwell and Welling in the ultra-exclusive hit club, poking a single and stealing a bag before being stranded in the third.

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   Matt Hilborn ripped an RBI single Wednesday during a tough loss at Chimacum. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Flip the script.

That’s what the Chimacum High School baseball squad is trying to do this season, and, so far, it’s been highly-successful.

After finishing in third-place in each of the previous three seasons of the 1A Olympic League, the Cowboys have taken sole possession of first-place a third of the way through the 2018 season.

Chimacum made that jump by holding on in the rain Wednesday to nip visiting Coupeville 5-4 in an early battle for supremacy.

With the win, the Cowboys (3-0 in league play, 4-5 overall) go a game up on the Wolves (2-1, 7-4), who saw their four-game win streak snapped.

Defending league champ Klahowya (1-2, 2-7) and Port Townsend (0-3, 0-6) bring up the rear at the moment.

While Coupeville wanted to make a statement, and keep its best start in a decade going, the loss is not crippling.

There are six more league games still to play, and the Wolves will play four of those, including both future match-ups with Chimacum (Apr. 23 and 27) on their home diamond.

CHS didn’t play badly Wednesday, but came up short a few times and couldn’t get any help.

“Tough loss! Good game, but couldn’t get any of the breaks to go our way and we missed a few opportunities to help ourselves out,” said Coupeville coach Chris Smith. “Either way, we focus on winning or learning and we did some learning today.”

The Wolves struck first, getting a two-out triple from Hunter Smith followed by an RBI single off the bat of Julian Welling in the top of the first.

As it would all too often, though, the brief rally died there and Chimacum immediately answered with two runs of its own in the bottom half of the inning.

A pair of walks set the table for Cole Dotson, who brought both of his teammates around with a two-run single to left-center.

It was all the Cowboys would get, though.

Smith, who whiffed four while tossing a complete game, promptly got himself out of the inning with his first two K’s of the day.

Chimacum added a run in the second, taking advantage of both a passed ball and a wild pitch, dropping the Wolves into their biggest deficit of the afternoon.

Coupeville is an opportunistic team, however, and has shown skill at rallying from deficits all season.

Wednesday was no different as the Wolves plated two in the top of the third to tie things up.

Again it was the red-hot Welling, whose single knocked in Nick Etzell, who doubled, and Smith, who had been plunked by a pitch.

CHS left two aboard, though, one of many opportunities left unexplored in a rain-soaked game.

The Cowboys scraped out six hits against Smith, who was undefeated coming in to the start, and three of them came in the game-busting bottom of the third.

Stringing together base-knocks from Matthew Bainbridge, Cody Clark and Aaron Serrato, Chimacum picked up its final two runs, taking the lead for good.

After Coupeville sliced the deficit back to one run in the fourth, with Jake Pease walking and scampering home on an RBI single by Matt Hilborn, the two teams descended into a pitcher’s duel.

Neither squad tallied a run in their final three times at bat, as Smith and Dotson traded goose eggs the rest of the way.

The Wolves had a couple of shots, with Welling crushing a one-out double in the fifth, only to be stranded, and Kyle Rockwell called out on interference on what should have been a sixth inning base-knock.

Coupeville matched Chimacum’s six hits, with Welling picking up 50% of those with two singles and a double.

Hilborn, Etzell (getting his extra-base hit on the birthday of older twin siblings Marisa and Lucas) and Smith rounded out the hit parade.

The Wolves get a couple days off to tweak their games (and avoid the raindrops), returning to action with a pair of non-conference games against Sequim and La Conner Apr. 16 and 19.

After that comes the stretch run, six straight league bouts in a 13-day period.

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   Mere moments later, Julian Welling delivered a win for Coupeville when he ripped a walk-off base-knock in extra innings. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Emma Mathusek gets low to field an incoming rocket (and avoid the wind).

   Wolf superstars Ashley Menges (left) and Ema Smith provide an answer to the old-school question … who let the dogs out?

   Darren and Kelly Crownover commune with nature, from the safety of their “bubbles.”

   There’s more to this pic than meets the eye, as our paparazzi has gone artistic on us, intentionally blurring out everything but the incoming baseball.

   “So … we all agree … it’s freakin’ windy as heck out here and we need a domed stadium.”

Joey Lippo dances the bunt ballet.

   Katrina McGranahan, manning the dugout bell that the Wolf softballers ding to celebrate big plays, enjoys her power.

Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these paparazzi from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.

Apparently you can add wind to the motto, as lightning-fast camera clicker John Fisken braved sustained gusts Saturday to shoot every sport going down in Cow Town.

Wolf soccer glossies already hit Coupeville Sports and now you can marinate in softball and baseball.

To see everything Fisken shot, pop over to:





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   Dane Lucero rapped a two-run single to kick things off Saturday, as Coupeville rallied to knock off 2A Cedarcrest. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Julian Welling had the last laugh.

The Coupeville High School senior was stung by Cedarcrest Saturday, but quickly rebounded and hit the visitors twice as hard, lifting his squad to a thrilling win in extra innings.

Unable to completely slam the door on the 2A Red Wolves in the late going as a relief pitcher, Welling responded by drilling a walk-off RBI single as Coupeville roared back to win 7-6 in eight innings.

The victory, the fourth straight for the Wolves, lifts them to 7-3 headed into the biggest game of the season.

That comes Wednesday, when Coupeville, 2-0 in Olympic League play, travels to Chimacum (1-0) to face the Cowboys in a game which will give the winner sole possession of first place in conference action.

CHS will arrive for that game on a high, both from its current winning streak, and the flamboyant style in which said streak stayed alive against all odds.

Twice rallying from a run down, with the second time coming in extra innings, Coupeville showed grit and resilience against a large 2A school which was riding high with a 6-3 mark entering Saturday.

The Wolves rep one of the smallest 1A schools in the land, but have acquitted themselves nicely against much-bigger rivals this season, going 2-2 against 2A foes.

Saturday’s game was a tense, back-and-forth affair, with the teams changing leads multiple times, but neither squad able to pull away.

Coupeville’s biggest lead came at 2-0 when it plated a pair of runners in the bottom of the first inning.

Matt Hilborn and Joey Lippo were aboard on a walk and a bunt single and busy tormenting the Cedarcrest hurler when he slipped up and delivered a juicy one to Dane Lucero.

Taking full advantage, the Wolf junior ripped a two-run single to open the scoring and raise the tantalizing possibility of a blowout on the horizon.

It wasn’t to be, however.

Instead, Cedarcrest knotted things at 2-2 in the second, then, after CHS scraped out a run in the bottom half of the inning on a Nick Etzell double followed by a Hilborn single, the two teams traded goose eggs until the fifth.

Coupeville had a magnificent opportunity in the third, loading the bags with no outs, only to have three consecutive hitters promptly punched out on strikes.

When Cedarcrest slipped two runs across in the fifth to retake the lead at 4-3, that third-inning kerfuffle looked even worse, but hope would not die on this day.

The Wolves packaged doubles from Hilborn and Hunter Smith around a free pass to Lippo in the sixth to snatch the lead right back, sending themselves charging out for the top of the seventh up 5-4.

The simple route would have been to retire the visitors 1-2-3 and head in with the win, beating the rain and getting out of the wind.

Welling likes to court danger, though, and Cedarcrest seized a glimmer of hope, using three extra-base hits and an error to plate one in the seventh to tie and one in the eighth to take the lead.

It was a moment fit for a lesser team, and a lesser player, to crumble.

Not on this day, and not this player and team.

Welling, like all good-hearted people, is a fervent fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and knows deep in his soul what it takes to be a champion.

Toss in his teammates, even those who … ugh … root for the SeaSlugs, and you have a band of warriors who have been tested in the fires and have launched Coupeville baseball to its best start in a decade by refusing to go down easy.

Inspired by a few quiet words of wisdom from the hardball whisperer, AKA coach Chris Smith, the Wolves stepped to the plate in the bottom of the eighth looking not for a mere tie, but an outright win.

Hilborn played patient, eking out a walk to get a man aboard with one out, then Lippo got dramatic.

Swinging on a full count, he lashed a laser, and came within a step of winning the game on one swing.

While Hilborn cruised home with the tying run, Lippo was held to a triple, and not a game-winning two-run home-run, only because his tootsies outran his head.

When his helmet came off and stayed behind as his body continued on, high school rules dictated he had to stop at the last base he hit, planting him firmly at third while he waited for his wayward head-protection to be returned to his noggin.

That small stickler of a rule gave Cedarcrest one last gasp of air, but, two batters later, it was payback time.

Strutting to the plate, waggling his bat like a rampaging Viking heading off the boat and looking for a new English village to conquer, Welling was a feel-good ending come to life for Wolf Nation.

And forget about a little blooper or a shallow single.

This was winning time and Welling blew the cover off the ball, giving Lippo enough time to stroll home, both hands holding his helmet firmly on his head, if he had wished.

In a different situation it would have been a two-bagger, but all that was needed was a quick step on first for the single, and cue the celebration among the cold, wind-lashed Wolf faithful.

For those who stayed for the entire game, they saw Coupeville spread out 10 hits among eight batters.

Lippo (1B, 3B) and Hilborn (1B, 2B) led the way, while Etzell and Hunter Smith had doubles.

Welling, Lucero, Jake Hoagland and Kyle Rockwell added singles.

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   Julian Welling was a force at the plate and in the field Friday, propelling Coupeville into sole possession of first-place in the Olympic League (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Julian Welling was unstoppable.

A game after being beaned three times, the Coupeville High School senior first-baseman rebounded Friday to slay visiting Port Townsend with both his booming bat and his nimble feet and glove on defense.

Sparked by Welling, the Wolves overcame a viciously cold prairie wind and an umpire with a fairly creative strike zone to topple the pesky RedHawks 3-1.

The win, Coupeville’s third in the past four games, lifts them to 2-0 in Olympic League play, 5-3 overall.

It also gives them sole possession of first-place, a half-game up on Chimacum (1-0).

Defending champ Klahowya (1-2) and Port Townsend (0-2) hold down the bottom slots at the moment.

Friday’s game wasn’t totally what was expected, but a win is a win, especially one that keeps you as the top dog.

Port Townsend entered the day on a 46-game losing streak, dating back to Apr. 9, 2015, but it hung tough, scoring first and leading into the bottom of the third.

The RedHawks scraped out three hits on the afternoon and two of them came in the opening frame.

Toss in a walk and a Wolf dropping a fly ball while on the run, and the visitors exited the inning with a single, solitary run.

Which was kind of huge for Port Townsend, as it’s only the fifth one they’ve scored in as many games this season.

Meanwhile, Coupeville couldn’t get its own offense untracked, alternating between eking out some walks and putting the ball into the air, where it died a swift death in the merciless wind.

It wasn’t until the bottom of the third that the Wolves finally found a way to keep the ball on the ground, and it immediately paid dividends.

With Nick Etzell and Joey Lippo aboard on walks, CHS managed to move them into scoring possession with two outs, then caught a break when a wild pitch sent Etzell scrambling home with the tying run.

The hitter at the plate, one Mr. Welling, then broke his team’s hit-less streak, cranking an RBI single over the bag at third.

While Coupeville’s rally died promptly afterwards, the Wolves had an extra bit of pep in their step with a 2-1 lead, and they shut Port Townsend down the rest of the way.

After tossing three innings and striking out four, Dane Lucero gave way to relief ace Matt Hilborn, who buzzed through four fairly drama-free innings while matching his predecessor’s K-count.

He got a little help, though, with Jake Pease making a running catch in left, snagging the ball as it caressed the laces on top of his shoes.

Then there was Welling, who twice made sensational snags on potentially wayward throws at first, both times recovering to put a tag on the RedHawk runner trying to get by him.

The first one was a nice bang-bang play, while the second was pure artistry, as he had to make the play while down on his knees in the dirt.

“He made two great plays for us on defense, and, in a close ball game, that was huge,” said Coupeville coach Chris Smith.

Welling also tossed another run on the pile, stroking his second RBI single in the fifth.

His rocket back up the middle, which hit the grass hard, bit off a chunk and shot into center, plated Hunter Smith, who smashed a lead-off double to left-center after narrowly missing a home run a pitch before.

Coupeville finished with five hits, with Welling’s pair of singles and Smith’s double being joined by singles off of the bats of Kyle Rockwell and Hilborn.

While it was a bit of a step back after the Wolves had smashed pitching the past couple of games, it was enough to nab a win, and that was what Chris Smith was most interested in seeing.

“Our bats were a little flat today for whatever reason, and we had trouble finding the grass in the middle of the field for awhile,” he said with a small smile. “But we adapted, and did what we needed to do in the situation.

“It’s a nice thing to see that we can go out there and play and adjust to whatever the situation might be.”

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