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Bryce Payne scores his first run Saturday, joining older brothers Morgan and Cole as “made men” for CHS baseball. (Joan Payne photo)

The youngest brother is a made man.

Coupeville High School senior Bryce Payne, in his first season with the Wolves, walked and came around to score Saturday, one of the bright spots in a 13-1 loss to visiting Overlake.

While the non-league defeat drops the Wolves to 0-2 as they prepare to head into their first league series, small things like quality work from Coupeville’s pitchers and the identity of the player who scored the lone Wolf run, made the day better.

Bryce follows in the footsteps of older brothers Morgan and Cole, both four-year players, and his first run in a Wolf uniform means the Paynes are one of the few families to have three different players score in a CHS varsity baseball game.

I’m pretty sure there’s a couple of others, probably with names like Zylstra, Cook, or Keefe, but I can’t say for sure, as Coupeville’s baseball history is scattered across many long-missing score books and lineup cards.

Either way, the Paynes are surely in an elite fraternity now, and that’s pretty special.

Overlake, a ritzy private academy, came out firing Saturday, putting up three runs in the top of the first, then adding another seven during a 12-batter second inning.

Their hosts had a few chances to score, most noticeably in their half of the first, but the Wolves couldn’t plate a runner until the bottom of the fifth (and final) inning.

After the first two CHS hitters went down in the bottom of the first, the Wolves juiced the bags on a single from Jake Pease, an error which allowed Dane Lucero to scamper to first, and a walk to Ulrik Wells.

Coupeville fans leaned forward in their seats, anticipating a possible big explosion, but it wasn’t to be as Overlake’s pitcher escaped the jam with an inning-ending strikeout.

After that, the Wolf offense hit a bit of a wall for awhile, going one-two-three the next two innings.

A fourth-inning single from Gavin Knoblich snapped the dry spell, then Coupeville loaded the bases again in the bottom of the fifth.

Walks to Payne, Hawthorne Wolfe, and Pease put a runner atop every bag, before Payne made a mad dash home to score on a passed ball.

Any hopes of an epic comeback withered on the vine, however, as a ground-out to the Overlake shortstop brought the game to an end.

While he’s always looking for a win, Coupeville coach Chris Smith knows he has a young, fairly inexperienced team on his hands, after losing a large class to graduation.

Improvement, in big and small ways, is job #1.

“Pretty happy with our pitching so far,” Smith said. “We had Dane, Hawk and Matt (Hilborn) throw yesterday and Daniel (Olson), Cody (Roberts), and Matt throw today. Pitching has been doing a pretty good job overall.

“And we have been doing a decent job getting on base,” he added. “We just need to get some timely hitting to put some crooked numbers on the scoreboard.”

Coupeville wades into the start of league play next week, and gets to face the biggest and baddest of them all, Cedar Park Christian, early.

The Eagles, who lost 7-4 to 3A Juanita in their only game this season, finished second at the 1A state tourney in 2017, then followed that up with a 4th place showing in 2018.

The teams meet three times next week, playing Monday and Friday in Bothell, while clashing Wednesday in Coupeville.

After that, the Wolves face their final three non-conference foes, Chimacum, University Prep, and Friday Harbor, before playing 12 games against league foes King’s, South Whidbey, Sultan, and Granite Falls.

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Wolf senior Jaschon Baumann teamed with Tiger Johnson to play Monday’s closest match. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Over and done with.

Until next time, at least.

Missing a key player after Mason Grove injured his shoulder pre-match Monday, the Coupeville High School boys tennis squad absorbed a methodical beating at the hands of host Overlake.

The ritzy private school Owls cruised to a 5-0 win in Redmond, dropping the Wolf netters to 1-2 on the season.

Coupeville, which is running the gauntlet this season by playing as a member of the Emerald City League, the top 1A tennis conference in the state, returns to action Wednesday with a home match against Bear Creek.

 

Complete Monday results:

 

Varsity:

1st Singles — Jakobi Baumann lost to Gavin Ybarra 6-2, 6-1

2nd Singles — Drake Borden lost to Anath Iyer 6-1, 6-1

1st Doubles — Zach Ginnings/Jacob Burke lost to Nachiket Kermarkar/Zander Gillett 6-1, 6-0

2nd Doubles — Tiger Johnson/Jaschon Baumann lost to Evan Lauer/Vignav Ramesh 6-4, 6-2

3rd Doubles — James Wood/Koby Schreiber lost to Sammy Yang/Yosup Cho 6-1, 6-1

 

JV:

4th Doubles — Harris Sinclair/Andrew Aparicio lost to Noah Wilson/Rohan Chatterjee 8-0

5th Doubles — Sinclair/Aparicio lost to Brandon Marcus/Yohan Cho 8-1

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   William Nelson teamed with Joey Lippo Friday to knock off a top-level Overlake doubles duo. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

State or bust.

That’s the goal for Coupeville High School senior tennis players William Nelson and Joey Lippo, who came very close to punching their ticket to the big dance last year, and want to clear that last hurdle before graduation.

With that in mind, their performance Friday was sterling.

Bouncing back after suffering their first loss of the season a day earlier, the Wolf doubles duo knocked off a pair of top-tier talents from visiting Overlake in straight sets.

While the ritzy private school powerhouse won the non-conference match 4-1, Lippo and Nelson’s triumph was a big deal, as it came against a duo the Wolf netters are likely to face deep in the postseason.

Their win at #1 doubles also allowed Coupeville to post a better score against Overlake than South Whidbey did, as the Falcons, who had drilled the Wolves Thursday, were blanked 5-0 by the Owls earlier this season.

After struggling to a 1-5 record against strong competition, CHS wades into league play full-force in the next two weeks.

The Wolves play four of their next five matches against Olympic League rivals Klahowya and Chimacum.

Complete Friday results:

Varsity:

1st Singles — Pedro Gamarra lost to Reyhan Virani 6-0, 6-1

2nd Singles — Jakobi Baumann lost to Ananth Iyer 6-2, 6-3

1st Doubles — William Nelson/Joey Lippo beat Wesley Chan/Charlie Hill 6-2, 6-4

2nd Doubles — Nick Etzell/Mason Grove lost to Nachiket Karmarkar/Zander Gillett 6-0, 6-4

3rd Doubles — Nile Lockwood/Zach Ginnings lost to Evan Lauer/Lucas Gavrila 7-6(7-1), 6-2

JV:

4th Doubles — Tiger Johnson/Jaschon Baumann lost 8-1

5th Doubles — Thane Peterson/Drake Borden lost 8-7(7-5)

6th Doubles — Koby Schreiber/Harris Sinclair lost 8-5

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Jakobi Baumann, seen here during a practice, battled strongly Friday in a loss. (John Fisken photo)

   Jakobi Baumann, seen here during a practice, battled strongly Friday in a loss. (John Fisken photo)

Call them the Comeback Kids.

The Coupeville High School boys’ tennis squad pulled off a pair of stunning rallies Friday to keep the private school boys on their toes.

While the come-from-behind wins at second and third doubles weren’t quite enough to tip the match in the Wolves favor — host Overlake slipped away with a razor-thin 3-2 win in Redmond — it proved Coupeville won’t go down easy.

Now 0-2 on the young season, after playing a large 2A school and a private school powerhouse, both on the road, the Wolves return home Monday.

Coupeville hosts another 2A school, Sequim (1-1), with play tipping at 3:30.

Friday the Wolves found themselves in a hole early, but came roaring back from a set down in two of their doubles matches to put a positive glow on the afternoon.

Grey Rische and Jimmy Myers stayed on the court the longest, pulling out a hard-fought win in a third-set tiebreaker.

Jimmy and Grey played a closely-contested match,” said CHS coach Ken Stange. “When they started their final tiebreaker, they were the last match on the court.

“Calm Grey and fiery Jimmy. It works fabulously!”

The biggest comeback though might have happened at second doubles, where juniors William Nelson and Joey Lippo dropped the first set 6-2.

After surging back to take the second set by the same score, they seemed at a dead-end, trailing 7-1 in a third-set tiebreaker played to 10.

Instead, the duo found their mojo in a snap, firing off nine straight points to shock the world with a 10-7 triumph.

In a match with just five varsity battles, being swept in the singles slots made life tough for the Wolves.

While he would have liked to have seen a different result on the score cards, Stange was pleased with the effort of his solo warriors.

“It was a good match,” he said. “Our singles guys were over-matched, but Nick (Etzell) played quite well.

“He employed his game plan the whole way through,” Stange added. “He’s getting better every day.”

Complete results:

Varsity:

1st singlesNick Etzell lost to Reyhan Virani 6-2, 6-3

2nd singles Nile Lockwood lost to Charlie Hill 6-0, 6-0

1st doublesJoseph Wedekind/John McClarin lost to Quinn Clelland/Nachiket Karmarkar 6-3, 6-4

2nd doublesJoey Lippo/William Nelson beat Zander Gillett/Kellen Foster 2-6, 6-2, 10-7

3rd doublesGrey Rische/Jimmy Myers beat Gaurav Nene/Lucas Gavrila 3-6, 6-4, 10-6

JV:

4th doublesAiden Crimmins/Nick Blalock lost to Chris Chen/Matt Heimbigner 6-3

5th doublesMason Grove/Jakobi Baumann lost to John Sinwell/Zach Natha 6-3

6th doublesKoby Schreiber/Jaschon Baumann lost to Evan Lauer/Josup Cho 6-1

7th doublesTiger Johnson/Elliot Johnson lost to Weston Kennedy/Sam Hirsch 6-4

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Wolves (Amy King photo)

   Wolves (l to r) Mia Littlejohn, Makana Stone, Lindsey Roberts and Kailey Kellner celebrate on the bench near the end of the game. (Amy King photos)

dinner

Off to dinner after the game.

"Of course we won."

“Of course we won.”

Allison Wenzel can not be stopped.

The Coupeville High School sophomore basketball player got her first varsity floor time Friday and immediately went off, draining a three-point bomb on her way to a five-point fourth quarter explosion.

Toss in 21 more from senior sensation Makana Stone, and the Wolf duo combined to outscore Overlake by themselves in the opening game of the Friday Harbor Tip-Off Classic.

By the time the game was done, with Coupeville’s big three (Stone, Mia Littlejohn and Kailey Kellner) completely sitting out the fourth quarter, the Wolves had strolled to a 37-20 win to kick-off the two-day tourney.

Now 1-1 on the season, CHS will get a chance at garnering a bit of revenge and redemption Saturday.

The Wolves will play Island rival South Whidbey — which nipped Friday Harbor 33-30 — in the tourney title game at 1:30 PM.

Less than 72 hours after it fell to the Falcons by a single bucket on opening night Wednesday, Coupeville will get the rematch it was anticipating.

The Wolves will be coming in on a big high, after they took the best their private school foes could offer and never blinked.

“We came out fired up and ready to play,” said Wolf coach David King. “Led from start to finish.”

Fresh off a bus-and-boat trip to get to Friday Harbor, Coupeville clung to a narrow 11-10 lead after the first quarter.

Stone tossed in five, Littlejohn added four and Tiffany Briscoe banked in a bucket, but the Owls seemed like they would make a tight affair of things.

Then, the Wolves clamped down on defense, holding Overlake to just five points over the next two quarters.

An 11-2 run in the second, fueled by eight more from Stone, pushed the halftime lead to 22-12.

Then a decisive 8-3 surge in the third — with all of Coupeville’s points coming from its lone senior — sealed the deal.

Comfortably ahead, King went to his bench big-time in the fourth, with Kyla Briscoe, Lauren Rose, Lauren Grove and Wenzel playing the whole way.

Lindsey Roberts and Tiffany Briscoe split the remaining eight minutes, allowing the squad’s trio of captains to rest up and enjoy the view from the bench.

They may have been on the bench, but they were loud ‘n proud while they were there.

“One thing about this team, they all want each other to succeed and play well,” King said. “Makana, Mia and Kailey all were vocal and cheering on their teammates.”

Wenzel, who played in all four quarters, made the most of her time in the spotlight.

Allison stole the show in the fourth,” King said. “As the shot clock was winding down and our bench counting it down, she found herself outside the three-point line in front of our bench with the ball.

“With three seconds left on the clock, she knew she had to shoot, she squared up and banked home a three,” he added. “Our bench went CRAZY!”

Proving she wasn’t a one-hit wonder, Wenzel took a pass just below the free throw line on the side of the key on the very next possession and drained the jumper.

At that point, Overlake began to wave the white towel of surrender.

Littlejohn added five points to back up the two-headed beast of Stone and Wenzel, while Tiffany Briscoe (3), Kellner (2) and Grove (1) rounded out the scorers.

Stone snared 16 rebounds, made off with three steals and rejected three shots, while Grove (five boards), Kellner (four rebounds, three assists) and Rose (three steals, two assists) all chipped in.

Tiffany Briscoe hauled in four rebounds and pilfered three steals, while Littlejohn, Roberts and Kyla Briscoe had three rebounds apiece.

While they’re happy with any win, this one was particularly satisfying for the coaching duo of David and Amy King.

“After the South Whidbey game we talked about being more patient on offense, don’t force the ball into the middle and don’t take the first open shot,” David King said. “We practiced that very well Thursday night and came out today and moved the ball very well.

“This was probably our best game in our three-plus years of coaching varsity that we didn’t rush our offense and played at the tempo we wanted to play at,” he added. “Overall it was a complete game with each player contributing.”

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