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Freshman Savina Wells had three hits, including a home run, in her second high school softball game. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Not all losses are the same.

Yes, the Coupeville High School varsity softball squad fell 8-5 at Lynden Christian Wednesday, but there’s more at stake here than just the final score.

While the non-conference loss drops the Wolves to 1-1 on the still-young season, getting to play a bigger school — and one that is a sports powerhouse — is the kind of challenge CHS coach Kevin McGranahan craves.

Unlike last season — when there were no playoffs and no non-conference games — and unlike the season before — which was simply erased by the pandemic — the 2022 Wolves get a chance to flex their muscles against big-time foes.

That should help tremendously when Coupeville chases a return to the state tourney.

Wednesday the Wolves squared off with a school coming off of a girls basketball state title, in a game played in a town where wins are highly valued.

And take one inning out, and Coupeville likely heads home with a victory.

“We played seven innings of up and down softball tonight,” McGranahan said. “(The score) is deceiving.

“We started out strong and fell apart in one inning, giving up runs on a bunch of errors,” he added. “We take out those errors and we win, but unfortunately the errors still count.”

Coupeville drew first blood, pushing across a run in the top of the first thanks to some prime-time two-out hitting from Savina and Izzy Wells.

The freshman catcher punched a single, then came around to score when her big sis whacked an RBI double.

Izzy Wells played strongly on both sides of the ball against a tough foe.

A day after obliterating South Whidbey, Izzy Wells was strong in the pitcher’s circle again, and the game was knotted at 1-1 heading into the bottom of the fourth inning.

That was where Coupeville’s gloves went on strike, with a series of bobbled balls allowing Lynden to blitz the scoreboard for six runs.

The Lyncs added another run in the fifth to stretch their lead out to 8-1, but the Wolves dug in and gave their hosts some heart palpitations before things were done.

CHS sprang back to life with a three-run rally in the sixth, getting base-hits from Audrianna Shaw, Savina Wells, Madison McMillan, and Taylor Brotemarkle.

Not done just yet, Savina Wells came back around in the seventh to launch her first high school home run, a two-out solo shot which capped a three-hit day for the fab frosh.

Sparked by the round-tripper, the Wolves brought the tying run to the plate, thanks to back-to-back walks to Izzy Wells and McMillan, before Lynden escaped with the win.

The Wolves, who started four freshmen in the game, with Mia Farris joining McMillan, Brotemarkle, and Savina Wells, return to action Mar. 22, when they host La Conner in their league opener.

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Nezi Keiper was one of eight Wolves to score Friday in a key road win. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Advantage, Wolves.

Rampaging on the road Friday, the Coupeville High School varsity girls basketball team rolled to a big win and moved a step closer to clinching a playoff berth.

Taking apart host Friday Harbor to the tune of 39-25, the Wolves improve to 5-3 in Northwest 2B/1B League play, 7-6 overall.

Who the victory came against is almost as important as the fact CHS claimed the rout.

Coupeville, Friday Harbor, and La Conner — the three 2B schools in the NWL — are fighting for two postseason slots.

La Conner has already clinched one berth and is all but assured of being the #1 seed.

With its win Friday, Coupeville pushes Friday Harbor to the edge of elimination.

Beat the Wolverines a second time next Saturday, Feb. 12, this time in Coupeville on Senior Night, and CHS is the #2 seed to the district tourney and plays Auburn Adventist Feb. 15 in a loser-out, winner-to-state game.

But if they should lose that regular season finale, the Wolves will immediately play Friday Harbor again Feb. 14 in a tiebreaker game for that last playoff spot.

Short answer: Friday Harbor can’t lose again, and Coupeville has two chances to win one game (but would prefer to do it in just one game).

Now that it’s all as clear as mud, on to this Friday’s win, in which the Wolves overcame the absence of three key players.

Lyla Stuurmans, Alita Blouin, and Carolyn Lhamon were all sidelined for various reasons, but their teammates more than handled things, with eight different players scoring for CHS.

The game was a tense affair through the first eight minutes, with Friday Harbor clinging to a 9-8 lead at the first break.

After that, the Wells sisters went to work, combining for seven points in the second frame as Coupeville went on a 12-6 run.

Older sister Izzy knocked down a pair of buckets, lil’ sis Savina rippled the nets on a three-ball, and the Wolves went to the locker room up 20-15.

From there Coupeville stretched the margin out to 31-19 through three quarters, then ran the clock out on their hosts.

Izzy Wells dropped in a game-high 10 points to fuel the balanced Wolf attack, with Nezi Keiper, Maddie Georges, and Audrianna Shaw chipping in with six apiece.

Savina Wells (5), Ja’Kenya Hoskins (2), Gwen Gustafson (2), and Abby Mulholland (2) also scored, while Katie Marti brought energy off the bench.

CHS players enjoy the action.

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Izzy Wells denies you. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Two schools, four teams, one Island, one photographer.

Wanderin’ paparazzi John Fisken stayed busy Saturday, clicking away as Coupeville High School hosted South Whidbey in a pair of girls basketball games.

The Falcons claimed the JV contest, while the Wolves rebounded to come out on top in the varsity tilt, all set to the tune of the click of the camera.

To see everything Fisken snapped, and possibly purchase some glossy mementos for Aunt Ruth and Uncle Roberto down in Boca, pop over to:

 

Coupeville:

https://www.johnsphotos.net/Sports/Coupeville-Basketball-2021-2022/GBB-2022-01-22-vs-South-Whidbey/

 

South Whidbey:

https://www.johnsphotos.net/Sports/South-Whidbey-HS/GBB-2022-01-22-South-Whidbey-at-Coupeville/

 

Brooklyn Thayer lays claim to the basketball.

Gwen Gustafson drills the bottom out of the net.

Reese Wilkinson loses her defender.

Savina Wells has a present for the hoop.

Heading out of bounds, Falcon ace Hadley Eager saves the play by alertly throwing the ball off of Lyla Stuurmans.

Mia Farris delivers another bucket.

Coach Greg Turcott (red shirt) plots outs strategy for the Wolf JV.

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Savina Wells soars for the tip. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Hawthorne Wolfe leaves Mount Vernon Christian in his dust.

Things are about to get much busier.

Or, at least that’s the hope.

Nothing is set in stone during the Age of Coronavirus, but, as of this moment, the Coupeville High School basketball teams are scheduled to play four times this coming week.

The Wolves travel to Darrington Tuesday, Jan. 18, then are home to face Friday Harbor and Concrete the next two nights.

The week gets its cap with non-conference tilts with next door neighbor South Whidbey Saturday, with the Wolf girls at home, and the boys traveling to Langley.

As we wait for a week jam-packed with hoops, a look at where the CHS varsity teams stand in Northwest 2B/1B League play.

Through games of Jan. 15:

 

Northwest League boys basketball:

School League Overall
Coupeville 5-0 7-0
MV Christian 3-1 6-3
Friday Harbor 2-2 3-4
Darrington 1-1 3-3
La Conner 1-2 3-5
Orcas Island 1-2 3-4
Concrete 0-5 1-9

 

Northwest League girls basketball:

School League Overall
La Conner 6-0 11-1
MV Christian 5-1 9-2
Coupeville 3-3 4-4
Friday Harbor 2-3 2-6
Darrington 1-2 3-4
Orcas Island 1-2 2-5
Concrete 0-7 2-10

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Audrianna Shaw slapped in 12 points Tuesday as Coupeville cruised to its fourth win in five games. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Savina Wells celebrated her 15th birthday in appropriate fashion — as a winner.

The Coupeville High School freshman was one of 10 players to score Tuesday, as the Wolf varsity girls basketball team obliterated host Concrete 59-25.

The victory lifts CHS to 3-0 in Northwest 2B/1B League play, 4-1 overall, heading into a big showdown at Mount Vernon Christian Friday night.

As the Wolves prep for the weekend — they also have a non-conference clash at South Whidbey Saturday — they sit a half-game off the lead in the NWL.

Defending champs La Conner are 4-0 in league action, 7-0 overall.

Tuesday’s road trip to the wilds of Concrete went off about as well as possible, with the Wolves popping the net from the word go.

Maddie Georges sank two shots from behind the three-point arc in the first quarter, part of an eight-point opening for the junior guard, while Ja’Kenya Hoskins controlled the paint.

Up 17-2 at the first break, Coupeville stretched the margin out to 31-7 by the half, then 50-16 heading into the final frame.

It was the sort of well-balanced, everybody-contributes effort CHS coach Megan Smith is thrilled to see.

“We have a solid team! They are in it to win it,” she said.

“And I am beyond impressed with all the strides I have seen them make so far,” Smith added. “It’s only up from here.”

Shaw and Lyla Stuurmans have had plenty to celebrate.

Georges paced the Wolves with a game-high 13, including a trio of three-balls, while Audrianna Shaw knocked down 12 in support.

Izzy Wells (8), Hoskins (6), Carolyn Lhamon (5), Nezi Keiper (4), Savina Wells (4), Gwen Gustafson (4), Abby Mulholland (2), and Lyla Stuurmans (1) also scored, with freshman Katie Marti also seeing floor time.

 

JV sidelined:

Concrete only has one team, so Coupeville’s younger stars had the night off.

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