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Coupeville’s Daniel Olson reached base twice Friday, rapping a single and eking out a walk in a road loss to King’s. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

At least they’re headed home.

After absorbing an 8-0 loss to King’s Friday night in Shoreline, the Coupeville High School baseball team will spend much of the second half of its season on The Rock.

A team which lost eight players to graduation continues to struggle at the plate, averaging just a single run per game.

Hopefully, steady home cooking will power up the bats.

With Friday’s loss, the Wolves fall to 0-6 in North Sound Conference play, 0-10 overall.

Coupeville is tied with Sultan (0-6, 0-11), a half-game off of Granite Falls (0-5, 2-8) for the fourth, and final, NSC playoff berth.

Cedar Park Christian (8-0, 10-1), South Whidbey (8-1, 11-1), and King’s (4-2, 5-6) hold down the top three slots at the moment.

The Wolves play seven of their final nine regular-season games on the Island, with six in Coupeville.

CHS has three-game series with South Whidbey, Sultan, and Granite remaining on the schedule.

Over the next three weeks, Coupeville plays at home every Monday and Friday, with Wednesday road trips.

While the win/loss record is a big step down from last year, when a veteran Wolf squad finished 15-6, won a league title, and fell a game shy of the state tourney, this year’s team has been competitive.

Pitching and defense have been generally solid, and Coupeville has put runners aboard at a decent clip. But they keep missing out on getting a game-busting hit or two.

The Wolves hung with private school power King’s all week, but, after close 5-0 and 3-2 losses, Friday’s game finished with the most lopsided score.

The host Knights put the game away early this time around, using seven hits and two walks to pile up six runs across the first two innings.

After that, Wolf hurler Daniel Olson and reliever Gavin Knoblich largely stifled their foes.

Olson retired six straight batters from the end of the second inning to the beginning of the fourth, tossing four strikeouts in four innings of work.

Knoblich, who moved out from behind the plate, where he nailed a would-be base thief earlier in the game, pitched the final two innings.

He gave up just a single hit and whiffed a batter, while throwing to senior shortstop Matt Hilborn, who caught for the first time since his freshman campaign.

After banging out seven hits Wednesday, the Wolf offense sputtered Friday, putting only three runners on base.

Olson had the longest adventure, ripping a one-out single in the second inning, moving to second on a stolen base, then scampering to third on a ground-out.

Unfortunately that’s where his trip ended, and the Wolves accomplished little more at the plate.

Knoblich singled in the fourth, but was thrown out on an attempted steal, while Olson led off the fifth with a walk, only to again be stranded.

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Coupeville’s Shane Losey thumped a double Wednesday, while also making several strong catches in center field. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Jonny Carlson tossed 1.2 innings of scoreless relief during a narrow 3-2 loss to King’s.

Missed it … by that much.

The Coupeville High School baseball squad put King’s on the ropes Wednesday, but couldn’t quite land the knockout punch.

The Wolves, who have struggled mightily on offense all season, rallied for two runs in the bottom of the seventh, but stranded the tying run at first base and fell 3-2 to the visiting Knights.

Despite putting together a seven-hit assault, one of its best showings of the season, Coupeville falls to 0-5 in North Sound Conference play, 0-9 overall.

That leaves CHS in a tie with Granite Falls (0-5, 2-8), a half-game behind Sultan (0-4, 0-9) for the fourth, and final NSC playoff berth.

Cedar Park Christian (8-0, 10-1), South Whidbey (6-1, 9-1), and King’s (3-2, 4-6) hold down the top three slots in a jumbled-up race.

While the rebuilding Wolves have been blown out at times this season, they have played the Knights strongly through the first two bouts in their three-game season series.

The schools wrap up things Friday in Shoreline, and if Coupeville plays like it did Wednesday, it’s very reasonable to think it could finally break through and nab that elusive first victory.

Other than a miscue here or there, the Wolves were solid on their home diamond, with pitchers Dane Lucero, Jonny Carlson, and Cody Roberts teaming to hold King’s largely in check.

Coupeville put runners aboard all game, but kept on missing on that one big hit which would have cracked things open.

Then they came 99.2% of the way to getting the job done in a wild seventh inning.

And it all started with Coupeville down to its final out, and not a base runner in sight.

After a strikeout and a little nubber in front of the plate scooped up by an alert King’s catcher, the Wolves looked like they were headed to another shutout.

With one out to go, a goose egg would have left Coupeville having scored just eight runs across nine games.

But Shane Losey was having none of that.

The Wolf senior whacked a liner to left which tore into the outfield grass and shot high in the air, allowing him time to tear round the base-paths and slide into second base in a cloud of dust mixed with reborn hope.

Matt Hilborn followed with an infield single, busting a gut to beat the throw by a step, then stole second to set up sophomore slugger Daniel Olson for his spotlight moment.

The teen who always hijacked my computer at David’s DVD Den back when he was a kindergartner was ready, poking a ball into the gap between second and first.

While the Knights first-baseman got to the ball, no one was covering the bag, allowing Olson to screech into first unimpeded, while both of his veteran teammates came around to score in the madness and confusion.

With hard-thumping third-baseman Jake Pease strolling to the plate, popping his muscles and squeezing the life out of his bat, the moment had fairy tale ending written all over it.

It wasn’t to be on this day, however, as the King’s shortstop came up with a big play on a hot grounder, going into the hole and popping back up to make the long game-ending throw.

While the final score came up just short of what Coupeville was hoping for, the game was a huge step forward for the Wolves.

Even when they weren’t scoring in the early innings, they had King’s coaches on edge.

The Wolves had base-runners aboard in four of the first six innings, but the Knights dodged danger time and again.

It started in the bottom of the first, when back-to-back base-knocks by Pease and Lucero gave CHS a golden two-out opportunity, only to see a ground-out prematurely end things.

After going down 1-2-3 in the second and third, the Wolves got a booming two-bagger in the fourth from Lucero, who launched a moon ball which hit just inside the right field line, then skipped merrily away from the charging fielder.

But two strong King’s defensive plays later and Coupeville exited with its starting hurler still camped at second.

It was a recurring theme, as Bryce Payne and Hilborn walked in the fifth, but were stranded, before Pease singled and Lucero walked in the sixth, only to be denied thanks to a slick double play.

While the Wolves came close but couldn’t break through, King’s put two runs on the board in the first and tacked on another in the third.

The opening frame especially hurt, as CHS looked ready to escape unscathed.

After an opening walk, Lucero bounced back to whiff the next hitter, then Gavin Knoblich nailed a would-be base-thief, the first of two punch-outs by the Wolf catcher.

With the bases un-juiced, things were looking peachy, until King’s responded with consecutive base-knocks and took advantage of a throw which sailed over its intended recipient.

The third run came via three singles, but the damage was muted when Losey closed the third inning by making a superb snag on a long fly while running full tilt.

Lucero kept King’s at bay in the fourth and fifth, before pitch count limits moved him across the diamond to man first base.

In his stead, Carlson and Roberts teamed up to deliver another pair of flawless innings.

Carlson retired five of the seven hitters he faced, before his freshman teammate came in to end King’s last scoring chance on a bases-loaded strikeout.

Coupeville spread its hits among five players, with Lucero (2B, 1B), Pease (1B, 1B), Losey (2B), Olson (1B) and Hilborn (1B) all collecting base-knocks.

Payne, Hilborn, and Lucero each walked, with Knoblich, Gavin Straub, Mason Grove, Sage Sharp, and Ulrik Wells all shining on defense.

Wells had a super-smooth snag on a liner at first to rob King’s of a hit, while Grove hauled in several long blasts while working way out in the weeds in left.

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Matt Hilborn pitched strongly Monday, but he and his teammates never had a chance to score, as they were shutout 5-0 by King’s. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

The bats are not responding.

A season-long funk continued Monday for a rebuilding Coupeville High School baseball squad, as the Wolves put only three runners aboard in a 5-0 loss at King’s.

Eight games into the season, CHS, which lost eight players to graduation, has scored eight runs total and absorbed eight losses.

And yet, the Wolves still sit firmly in the middle of a race for a playoff spot, thanks to a wide disparity between the top three and bottom three hardball teams in the North Sound Conference.

Four of six schools advance to bi-districts, and Coupeville (0-4 in league, 0-8 overall) is mired in a tie with Granite Falls (0-4, 2-7) and Sultan (0-4, 0-9) for the #4 slot with 11 conference games left on the schedule for the trio.

Cedar Park Christian (7-0, 9-1), which has advanced to the state semifinals two years running, is a game up on South Whidbey (6-1, 9-1), while King’s (2-2, 3-6) sits in third.

Coupeville gets two more cracks at King’s, with the teams playing Wednesday on Whidbey, then Friday back in Shoreline.

After that comes a three-game series with arch-rival South Whidbey, before the final six games of the regular season pit the Wolves against Sultan and Granite.

Monday’s game stayed close much of the way, with King’s scratching out a run in the bottom of the first, then carrying that 1-0 lead into the fifth.

The Knights tacked on a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning, then added two more in the sixth, but never really went wild.

Coupeville pitchers Matt Hilborn and Cody Roberts stayed out of major trouble much of the way, combining to whiff nine.

The only problem was the Wolves couldn’t get anything going offensively, with just one hit and two walks stacked up against a season-high 14 K’s at the plate.

Bryce Payne walked in the third, Ulrik Wells stroked a single in the fifth, and Hilborn eked out a free pass in the sixth, but it went nowhere, as none of the Wolves made it successfully to second base.

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Willow Vick, here competing in the javelin in an earlier meet, set a PR Thursday in the discus. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Logan Martin (right) also set a personal best in the discus, as Coupeville High School track and field competed in an eight-team meet at King’s.

They rose to the occasion.

Competing at an eight-team meet Thursday at Woolsey Stadium in Shoreline, the Coupeville High School track and field squad came away with four wins and 21 PR’s.

The Wolves finished third in the girls team standings, and fourth in the boys, while host King’s claimed both team titles.

South Whidbey, Bellevue Christian, Grace Academy, Mount Vernon Christian, La Conner and Shoreline Christian rounded out the field.

Leading Coupeville were individual winners Mallory Kortuem (400), Danny Conlisk (400), Jean Lund-Olsen (100) and Ryan Labrador (shot put).

Emma Smith (shot put), Lund-Olsen (200), Koa Davison (high jump), Lindsey Roberts (100 hurdles and high jump), and both girls relay teams claimed 2nd place finishes.

Coupeville gets right back at it in two days, hosting a meet Saturday at Mickey Clark Field. Things kick off at 11 AM.

 

Complete Thursday results:

 

GIRLS:

100 — Ja’Kenya Hoskins (13th) 14.26 *PR*; Mikaela Labrador (24th) 15.74 *PR*

400 — Mallory Kortuem (1st) 1:02.29

800 — Lucy Sandahl (9th) 2:45.71

1600 — Catherine Lhamon (4th) 6:08.82; Sandahl (5th) 6:09.02; Alana Mihill (7th) 6:35.48 *PR*

100 Hurdles — Roberts (2nd) 16.06; Ja’Tarya Hoskins (11th) 21.89

4 x 100 Relay — Ja’Kenya Hoskins, Ja’Tarya Hoskins, Kortuem, Roberts (2nd) 52.75

4 x 200 Relay — Roberts, Kortuem, Ja’Tarya Hoskins, Ja’Kenya Hoskins (2nd) 1:51.42

Shot Put — Emma Smith (2nd) 30-11; Aurora Cernick (12th) 20-04; Megan Behan (15th) 18-09

Discus — Willow Vick (9th) 66-00 *PR*; Smith (10th) 65-07; Cernick (15th) 60-01 *PR*; Behan (25th) 45-01

Javelin — Behan (10th) 65-04 *PR*; Cernick (14th) 59-00 *PR*; W. Vick (16th) 58-00; Mihill (19th) 50-10 *PR*; MLabrador (20th) 44-01 *PR*

High Jump — Roberts (2nd) 4-10 *PR*

Long Jump — M. Labrador (13th) 12-06 *PR*

 

BOYS:

100 — Jean Lund-Olsen (1st) 11.43; Lucious Halstead (15th) 12.92 *PR*; Chris Ruck (20th) 13.15 *PR*

200 — Lund-Olsen (2nd) 22.96 *PR*; Danny Conlisk (3rd) 23.26; Halstead (10th) 26.47 *PR*; Ruck (22nd) 27.99

400 — Conlisk (1st) 50.63; Tiger Johnson (10th) 58.39 *PR*

Shot Put — Ryan Labrador (1st) 39-03; Keahi Sorrows (3rd) 36-11; Chris Battaglia (6th) 36-00; Brian Casey (15th) 31-04; Logan Martin (15th) 31-04; Elijah Okaruru (24th) 26-07 *PR*

Discus — R. Labrador (5th) 101-02; Sorrows (6th) 100-10 *PR*; Battaglia (7th) 99-04; Martin (10th) 94-05 *PR*; Casey (22nd) 77-05 *PR*; Okaruru (29th) 64-07

Javelin — Battaglia (5th) 124-06; Okaruru (34th) 65-03; Casey (35th) 62-03

High Jump — Koa Davison (2nd) 5-07 *PR*

Long Jump — Ruck (13th) 14-08

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CHS freshman Abby Mulholland and doubles partner Jaimee Masters displayed some impressive power Wednesday in their first varsity match together. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Finally.

After waiting a very, very long time, the Coupeville High School girls tennis squad kicked off its season Wednesday, falling 4-1 to visiting King’s.

While they would have preferred a win, just getting on the court and seeing a uniform other than their own was a victory.

The Wolf roster is jam-packed with young, talented, promising players, but thanks to scheduling issues, the netters sat while CHS baseball, softball, and boys soccer all played six games or more.

Once they were unleashed, the serve and volley crew brought tons of scrappiness and excitement while facing a seasoned foe.

Juniors Tia Wurzrainer and Avalon Renninger, making their debut as the new #1 doubles duo, lashed winners left and right, and were the only Wolves to win a varsity match.

Working effortlessly as one unit, the titanic twosome especially controlled the match at the net, pinging volleys which ripped off a chunk of the line as they flashed past their opponent’s rackets.

While the duo filled up a complete highlight reel with their work, one winner, in which Renninger hovered in the air for a solid minute before smashing a wicked left-handed slicer that tore a hole in the universe, was a thing of particular beauty.

While Wurzrainer and Renninger brought the biggest smile to longtime Coupeville coach Ken Stange’s face, there was plenty of other positive results to indicate a bright future ahead for the Wolves.

Freshmen Noelle Daigneault and Katelin McCormick, both lil’ sisters of former CHS tennis stars, made their debut an auspicious one.

When they weren’t entertaining the crowd (and themselves) with a freewheeling style of tennis (and giggling non-stop), they also zapped their fair share of service aces and wicked backhands en route to an opening day JV win.

While every one of the nine matches produced highlights, the best debut may have come from the final varsity team to take the court.

Sophomore Jaimee Masters and freshman Abby Mulholland fought through two tense sets, and while they fell just short to a King’s duo which made plays when they needed to the most, both Wolves brought a startling amount of raw power to the action.

A little more practice, a little more refinement of that power, and the duo should be a team to watch.

Even in its raw state, the power show was eye-popping at times, as Masters blasted winners which left both of her rivals glued to the court, and Mulholland brought big time heat with her serve.

 

Complete Wednesday results:

 

Varsity:

1st Singles — Genna Wright lost to Scarlett Ren 6-0, 6-4

2nd Singles — Jillian Mayne lost to Christina Wang 6-1, 6-0

1st Doubles — Tia Wurzrainer/Avalon Renninger beat Caroline Baker/Ava Dreon 6-2, 6-3

2nd Doubles — Eryn Wood/Emily Fiedler lost to Allie Kang/Grace Roberts 6-2, 6-3

3rd Doubles — Jaimee Masters/Abby Mulholland lost to Elma Lu/Jackie Cheung-Main 6-4, 7-5

 

JV:

4th Doubles — Elaira Nicolle/Bruna Moratori lost to Anika Poulsen/Olivia Vos 8-7(10-7)

5th Doubles — Noelle Daigneault/Katelin McCormick beat Elisabeth Kelly/Catherine Jones 8-5

6th Doubles — Maddy Andrews/Mary Milnes lost to Amelia Vander Wel/Abbie Gebrehiwot 8-6

7th Doubles — Cecelia Camarena/Cassidy Holmes lost to Holland Urie/Olivia Peterson 6-1

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