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Sam Wynn, seen here in 2019, won two Northwest 2B/1B League track and field titles Saturday. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Ryanne Knoblich comes flying in, while Cristina McGrath gets ready to motor in the 4 x 200 relay. (Deb Smith photos)

The Wolves hang out between events.

Short season, big accomplishments.

The ongoing pandemic limited the high school track and field season to just six meets, but Coupeville’s athletes excelled every step of the way.

Saturday was no different, as the Wolves won five titles and set 21 PR’s during the season-closing Northwest 2B/1B League Championships.

Competing on their home turf, CHS junior Logan Martin and senior Sam Wynn spent the most time on the awards podium, both winning a pair of titles.

Martin was tops in the shot put and discus, while Wynn bolted to a win in the 100, then ran a leg on a triumphant 4 x 100 relay squad.

He was joined on that squad by underclassmen Reiley Aracely, Dominic Coffman, and Aidan Wilson.

Also winning a title was Catherine Lhamon, who crushed the field in her final try at the 3200.

Beating her closest opponent by a minute and six seconds, the Wolf senior lapped four of her six foes.

Coming dangerously close to grabbing league titles were sophomore Ryanne Knoblich (high jump), Wilson (long jump), and the boys 4 x 400 relay unit, which all claimed second-place finishes.

By the time the day had ended, 14 Wolves had set a PR, with seven of them notching two personal bests.

That group included Aurora Cernick, Hank Milnes, Mikey Robinett, Ava Mitten, Camryn Clark, Wynn, and Cristina McGrath.

Perennial track power Mount Vernon Christian, which came to town with a deep, talented squad, claimed both team titles.

Coupeville finished third in the boys battle, and fourth in the girls rumble.

 

Complete Saturday results:

GIRLS:

100 — Ava Mitten (7th) 14.91 *PR*; Abigail Ramirez (8th) 16.10 *PR*; Maylin Steele (9th) 16.16 *PR*; Camryn Clark (14th) 17.51 *PR*

200 — Ja’Kenya Hoskins (3rd) 30.05; Mitten (10th) 31.72 *PR*; Ramirez (12th) 34.28; Steele (13th) 35.30; Clark (15th) 37.56 *PR*

400 — Ryanne Knoblich (5th) 1:13.32

1600 — Catherine Lhamon (3rd) 6:14.18

3200 — Lhamon (1st) 13:28.16

300 Hurdles — Cristina McGrath (7th) 1:03.86 *PR*

4 x 100 Relay — Mitten, Ramirez, Hoskins, Knoblich (3rd) 57.94

4 x 200 Relay — Mitten, Knoblich, C. McGrath, Hoskins (4th) 2:03.80

Discus — Aurora Cernick (4th) 69-10 *PR*; Erica McGrath (10th) 49-07

Javelin — Cernick (8th) 64-05 *PR*; E. McGrath (11th) 57-05

High Jump — Knoblich (2nd) 4-08

Long Jump — Hoskins (6th) 13-01.50; C. McGrath (9th) 12-04 *PR*; E. McGrath (14th) 11-04 *PR*

 

BOYS:

100 — Sam Wynn (1st) 11.79 *PR*; Ben Smith (5th) 12.35; Dominic Coffman (8th) 12.56; Reiley Araceley (10th) 12.76; Dakota Eck (13th) 13.28

200 — Smith (5th) 25.90 *PR*; Mikey Robinett (10th) 29.70

400 — Wynn (3rd) 55.36 *PR*; Robinett (11th) 1:06.47 *PR*

800 — Aidan Wilson (4th) 2:13.01 *PR*; Hank Milnes (6th) 2:34.75 *PR*

1600 — Mitchell Hall (4th) 5:04.60; Milnes (6th) 5:53.28; Tate Wyman (7th) 6:38.09

300 Hurdles — Wyman (5th) 56.20 *PR*

4 x 100 Relay — Wynn, Araceley, Coffman, Wilson (1st) 47.98

4 x 400 Relay — Wynn, Hall, Araceley, Wilson (2nd) 3:53.67

Shot Put — Logan Martin (1st) 42-00; Eck (8th) 29-09.50; Josh Guay (12th) 17-11

Discus — Martin (1st) 146-02; Robinett (11th) 70-06; Guay (15th) 49-11

Javelin — Hall (8th) 89-07 *PR*; Eck (12th) 79-07

High Jump — Coffman (3rd) 5-06

Long Jump — Wilson (2nd) 18-00; Coffman (11th) 15-00.50; Milnes (13th) 14-06 *PR*; Robinett (14th) 14-05.50 *PR*; Eck (18th) 14-00.25

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Coupeville senior Daniel Olson closed out his high school baseball career Saturday by getting the final out in a 30-0 win. (Morgan White photos)

First, a small round of applause for Ivory Souryavong.

You probably don’t know him. I had never heard of him before Saturday.

But, as a major rebuilding season ended for a painfully-young La Conner High School baseball squad, Souryavong provided the lone highlight for Brave fans.

La Conner fell at home, and fell hard, losing 30-0 to a confident, really-starting-to-jell Coupeville squad.

The Braves sent 16 hitters to the plate in the loss, with 13 striking out against Wolf hurlers Hawthorne Wolfe, Xavier Murdy, and Daniel Olson.

Two others grounded out.

But Souryavong, a freshman third-baseman, rapped a two-out single in the bottom of the third, providing La Conner’s lone base runner.

It’s a small thing, but it should be noted — a kid refusing to go down easy even when things are not so great.

So, some kudos to Souryavong, before we move on to extolling the virtues of his foes.

And those Coupeville diamond men were in fine form, closing this pandemic-shortened season at 7-3, second-best in the Northwest 2B/1B League.

Cole White is one of six Wolf freshmen on a 16-man roster.

First-year coach Will Thayer, with a pretty young roster of his own, got the best out of his diverse team, and loses just one senior to graduation.

That’s Olson, who once upon a time was my “assistant manager” at David’s DVD Den when he was a preschooler.

He was paid in candy, and I’m still not sure all the customer’s money made it into the till…

Now all grown up (at least mostly), he scored four times Saturday, and came to the mound to get the final out of the game, the season, and his prep career.

Olson ended things with another strikeout, punching out La Conner’s lone senior, Alden Schnabel, then strolled into the twilight.

For a moment at least, as the lanky Wolf is likely to return for basketball season.

After netting just a lone run in the top of the first, Coupeville dropped a 10-spot in the second, then tacked on 15 more in the third, before coasting home with four in the fourth.

With so many runs flying across the plate, the scorebook doesn’t show how a lot of Wolf hitters got on base, and I was in Freeland, helping my sister with chicken coops, and not camped out in La Conner.

So, if you were hoping for a complete breakdown of the hit parade, this is not the story you seek.

But suffice it to say that Thayer was able to get all 16 of his players into the game, with his young guns getting plenty of playing time.

“Super proud of this team,” said the CHS coach. “And excited to start building towards next season.”

After a strong junior campaign, Cody Roberts is primed to be Coupeville’s #1 pitcher when next season rolls around.

Wolfe and Murdy were pitching for the first time in a game this season, while Jonathan Valenzuela paced the offense, scoring five times.

Olson and Scott Hilborn both tapped the plate four times apiece, as well, with Cody Roberts coming around three times.

Also seeing playing time in the finale were Gabe Reed, Miles Davidson, Cole White, Sage Sharp, Zane Oldenstadt, Andrew Williams, Nick Guay, Coen Killian, Peyton Caveness, and Seth Woollet.

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Cody Roberts was one of eight Wolves to collect a hit Friday afternoon. (Morgan White photos)

The little things were a killer.

Playing a must-win game Friday, the Coupeville High School baseball squad outhit host Friday Harbor 10-5, yet still fell 8-6 on the scoreboard.

The difference was the five errors the Wolves committed, the eight walks they surrendered, and the runners they left aboard.

With the loss Coupeville drops to 6-3 in this pandemic-shortened season, while Friday Harbor (9-0) — the only team the Wolves have lost to — clinches the Northwest 2B/1B League title.

The trip was originally supposed to be a doubleheader, but with the first game running long, darkness on the horizon, and a champion crowned, the nightcap was cancelled.

Coupeville went into the afternoon knowing it still had a shot of at least sharing the league crown, but only if it swept both scheduled games from the Wolverines.

That would have left the two squads deadlocked at 8-2 heading into Saturday’s finales.

Instead, the Wolves will look to build on their positives from Friday and bounce back strongly against winless La Conner during a final, no-ferry-required road trip.

Facing off with the crafty, but not overpowering Wolverines, Coupeville went down 1-2-3 in the top of the first, then almost did the same to their hosts.

Unfortunately, they came up one batter short, and got stung.

After CHS pitcher Jonathan Valenzuela whiffed the first two Friday Harbor batters, the Wolverines took advantage of a pair of errors wrapped around a walk to ignite a fire.

Two singles made for decent kindling, and what looked like it would be a scoreless tie after one became a 3-0 deficit Coupeville would never quite overcome.

The Wolves had opportunity, as senior Daniel Olson led off the second inning with a resounding triple.

Only he died at third, when Friday Harbor’s pitcher dodged a bullet three straight times.

A Hawthorne Wolfe single also went for naught in the third, and by the time Coupeville found its scoring touch, it trailed 5-0 entering the top of the fourth.

That was Coupeville’s best frame, with a walk to Sage Sharp, singles from Valenzuela, Cody Roberts, and Peyton Caveness, and another big three-bagger — this one from super sophomore Scott Hilborn — putting four runs on the board.

The Wolves knotted things at 5-5 with a run in the fifth, with Sharp and Valenzuela collecting base-knocks, but Friday Harbor promptly reclaimed the lead.

CHS stranded a pair of runners in the sixth, after freshmen Caveness and Zane Oldenstadt got aboard on singles, before almost rallying in the seventh.

Zane Oldenstadt, collecting base-knocks.

Friday Harbor made its own errors, dropping a third strike and booting another ball, allowing the Wolves to trim things to 8-6, but that was as far as it went.

Valenzuela (who had eight K’s on the mound) and Caveness each had a pair of singles, with Wolfe, Sharp, Olson, Hilborn, Roberts, and Oldenstadt chipping in with a hit apiece.

Cole White and Xavier Murdy rounded out the very-young Wolf lineup, in which five of 10 players to see action Friday were freshmen or sophomores.

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Heidi Meyers bashed a two-run single Friday, part of a 16-hit, 20-run Coupeville attack. (Jackie Saia photos)

The Big Red (and Black) Machine keeps rolling.

Swinging sizzlin’ bats from the top of the lineup to the bottom, the Coupeville High School softball squad cruised to a 20-5 win Friday afternoon on Friday Harbor.

The victory lifts the Northwest 2B/1B League champ Wolves to a pristine 10-0 headed into their season finale Saturday at La Conner.

Facing off with Friday Harbor, which was the big dog in the NWL before Coupeville arrived this season, CHS went bonkers, running out to a 19-0 lead before taking its collective foot off the gas pedal.

“Everyone was on fire with the bat and we had several long innings,” said Coupeville coach Kevin McGranahan. “We played spoiler on their Senior Night with a lot of extra-base hits, and everyone played and contributed.”

The fireworks were loud and sustained, as the Wolves combined to rap out 16 hits, including four doubles.

On the day, 10 of 12 players reached base, with nine notching at least one base-knock as they methodically shattered Friday Harbor’s pitching staff.

The game was actually close for a hot second, as the two squads exchanged scoreless first innings, each getting a runner aboard but unable to bring them around.

It looked like that might hold in the top of the second as well, but a bit of luck (at least for Coupeville) cracked things open.

With runners at the corners and two out, Jill Prince slapped a grounder towards third base, then lit out for first.

Rushing to make the play and end the inning, Friday Harbor’s third-baseman uncorked a less-than-successful throw, allowing Prince to reach base safely, while Bella Whalen crashed home with the game’s first run.

Given new life, Coupeville tacked on three more runs in the inning, courtesy an RBI single to left from Coral Caveness and a two-run single to center off the bat of Chelsea Prescott.

With Izzy Wells firing BB’s from the pitcher’s circle, the Wolves held Friday Harbor down, then brought out the really big bats, torching Friday Harbor for 15 runs over the next two innings.

Kylie Van Velkinburgh smoked a two-run double as the Wolves won 20-5.

The Wolves sent 15 batters to the plate in the third, scoring nine of them in a variety of ways.

The first two came home on a gorgeous two-run double to deep left from Kylie Van Velkinburgh, then Audrianna Shaw and Caveness plated two more with bases-loaded walks.

The latter of those two free passes was more painful than the first, as Caveness, making a run for Nicole Laxton’s (unofficial) CHS softball record for being plunked, got drilled for the 3,523rd time this season.

Giggling, yet wincing, as she ambled down to first, the Wolf senior drew a round of applause from her teammates, and fans watching long-distance thanks to internet streaming.

Even after getting drilled by yet another pitch, Coral Caveness can smile (under her mask) about being 10-0.

A couple of Friday Harbor wild pitches and a dropped third strike helped pad the lead, which was 13-0 and growing by the end of the inning.

Wanting to toss a little defensive heat into what was largely an offensive extravaganza, Wells promptly got fancy, picking a runner off second in the bottom half of the third.

Whirling and firing a laser, she teamed up with Prescott as the Wolf shortstop went creepin’ behind the runner.

Then it was back to the big bopper show, with Wells lashing a two-run double and Shaw smashing an RBI two-bagger.

In between, senior Heidi Meyers strolled to the plate as a pinch-hitter and promptly laced a two-run single — a fiery shot which singed uniforms as it sailed between defenders.

Friday Harbor’s seniors fought hard, even down 19-0, and put together a couple of short rallies to pick up three runs in the fourth and a final two in the bottom of the fifth.

Coupeville’s final run, cracking the 20-run mark, was Prescott scrambling home in front of a booming Bailey double which left her bat like a circus performer flying out of a cannon.

On the afternoon, Wells finished with five strikeouts from the pitcher’s circle, and a team-high three hits at the plate.

Caveness tied her pitcher, drilling three singles to go with her painful walk, while Bailey (1B, 2B), Van Velkinburgh (2B, 1B), Prescott (1B, 1B), Shaw (2B), Gwen Gustafson (1B), Whalen (1B), and Meyers (1B) all had hits.

The Wolves also walked 10 times, with Gustafson (3) and Shaw (2) leading the way.

Rounding out the roster were the Battlin’ Lucero Twins, Allie and Maya, who both saw time in the field and at bat.

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Robert Wood has seen his first season as CHS boys soccer coach end before it began. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Robert Wood’s first season as head coach of the Coupeville High School boys soccer program is ending way too early.

The original plan was for a 10-game schedule which would have launched with a home game April 7 against Friday Harbor.

Friday afternoon, however, the season was scrubbed as the Wolves were unable to come up with enough players to field a full roster.

The decision was not an easy one, said CHS Athletic Director Willie Smith, but it was one which had to be made.

Many factors combined to create the situation, with the ongoing pandemic proving to be a major issue.

“I believe, with the combination of us being unable to play last spring, with what would have been one of the strongest teams we ever had, lack of being able to build some momentum from that season, and the inability to talk with kids directly in person is what led to this,” Smith said.

Another factor is Coupeville’s move from the 1A classification, where boys soccer is played in the spring, to 2B, where it’s played as a fall sport.

During the spring, soccer competed against baseball and track for athletes.

In the fall, it runs into boys tennis, cross country, and football.

“Of course the additional competition of boys soccer moving from the spring season to fall also had an impact,” Smith said. “But this is something we knew was happening, but didn’t know we’d be dealing with Covid for an entire year.”

While the booters will sit out this season (with many moving to other sports), all involved plan to work to revive the program.

“I feel very bad for our kids who turned out this year, as well as for our new head coach, Rob Wood, who I was really excited about to see how he could build upon the success of Kyle Nelson’s tenure and continue to move us forward,” Smith said.

“He and I, together with our local youth soccer program, will be getting together to figure out a plan to get this program back up and running.”

For Wood, who was making the jump from CHS assistant coach to head coach after a decade of also working with youth soccer, it’s a dark day.

“It’s very demoralizing,” Wood said. “I’ve worked for ten years to get the Central Whidbey Soccer Club and Whidbey Island rec soccer to a point as a feeder system to CHS.

“Covid killed a lot of sport for the game since we never came together last year,” he added. “I feel bad for those seniors last year that lost their best chance, but now I’m afraid for the program.

“It’s going to be that much more difficult in August recruiting players.”

But the dream endures, even in rough times.

“I’ll be here, ready to coach,” Wood said. “Ready to praise the boys that lift up the first soccer banner in our gym.”

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