Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Baseball, softball teams ring up road wins

Promising start to WRHS diamond campaigns

     Wood River High School’s varsity baseball and softball teams recorded solid non-conference victories last Tuesday and Wednesday in the mild weather and sunshine of Filer and Kimberly diamonds.

     First-year coach Donnie Green’s Wolverine boys (3-3, 0-2 league) rang up the first Wood River doubleheader sweep in three years by scores of 13-10 and 11-3 over the Filer Wildcats Tuesday. Freshman Cade Schott was the winning pitcher in both games.

     Last Friday, the Wood River boys took on the defending Great Basin Conference champion Minico Spartans (4-1, 2-0) and dropped a 3-0, 14-7 twinbill.

     Yet that represented progress for Wood River against Minico, GBC champs seven of the last nine years. Minico had beaten Wood River three times by a 37-5 score in 2013.

     Meanwhile, the Wood River girls’ softball team (3-1, 1-0) posted its first league victory 12-0 over Minico at Rupert last Friday with Brittney Bradley throwing the five-inning shutout and earning her third win.

     At Kimberly last Wednesday, junior Bradley scattered five hits over five innings with five strikeouts and two walks as the Wolverine girls (3-1, 1-0) defeated the host Bulldogs 10-4 with a lively 15-hit attack.

     Coming up: After Spring Break, Wood River has its first home games Tuesday, April 1—the boys hosting Minico for a 4:30 p.m. single game and the girls entertaining Minico for a 3:30 p.m. league doubleheader.

     Here are details from last week’s Wolverine games:

    · At Filer, the Wood River boys escaped with a 13-10 seven-inning victory in a back-and-forth opening game that featured 17 hits and 20 free passes issued between the two teams. The Wolverines scored the decisive five runs in the seventh and final inning to overcome a 9-8 deficit.

     Hailey sophomore Tyler Price tossed the first four innings and gave way to Schott in the fifth, with Wood River trailing at the time 5-4.

     Schott worked his way through a rocky sixth inning when Filer scored four runs taking its 9-8 lead, then Schott settled down in the seventh stanza and whiffed the final batter for the victory.

     Wood River did damage at the top of its productive batting order from freshman left fielder Owen Gifford (2 hits, double, 4 runs) and sophomore right fielder/third baseman Reide Whitehead (3 hits, 2 runs, 2 RBI).

     Senior center fielder Finn Isaacson (4 RBI), the clean-up hitter, chipped in two hits and delivered a big two-run single in the five-run Wood River seventh. Junior catcher Cameron Benson added an RBI single in the decisive rally.

     Wood River finished with 10 hits and drew 11 walks. The visitors scored five times on the free passes they obtained.

     Schott continued to pitch in the second game, starting and finishing the 11-3 four-inning victory. He allowed just four hits, enticed six infield outs and got three outfield outs. The Wolverines out-hit the Wildcats 10-4 in the nightcap.

     Whitehead (2 hits, double, 3 runs) led the attack and finished the doubleheader reaching base seven times in his nine trips to the plate.

     Other Hailey contributors were Benson (2 hits, 2 runs), Isaacson (2 RBI), senior shortstop Armando Gomez (2 hits, 2 stolen bases) and freshman first baseman Nic Tidwell (3 hits, 2 doubles, 2 RBI). Second baseman Dylan Broman also reached base three times.

     Wood River’s doubleheader sweep was the school’s first since a 13-5, 11-7 sweep at Buhl in March 2011. The team has now won three games, exceeding by one the entire victory total for the varsity’s 2012 and 2013 baseball campaigns.

     The Wolverine junior varsity won its Tuesday game at Filer by a score of 17-11.

     At Minico Friday, staff ace Isaacson (6 hits, 6 K, 5 BB) gave up only two earned runs and pitched a complete game in the 3-0 loss to the Spartans. Minico’s Danny Freiburger (8 K, 0 BB) tossed a five-hitter and contributed three hits from the No. 1 spot in the order.

     Wolverine pitchers Tidwell, Price, Gifford and Gomez shared the mound chores in the 14-7 nightcap loss at Rupert as Minico out-hit Wood River 13-10. Contributors included Gifford (2 hits, 2 runs), Isaacson (2 hits, 2 runs), Tidwell (2 hits) and Adrian Rojas (1 hit, 2 runs).

     Coaching the Wood River baseball program are Green, Andy Miles and Jesse Neet.

    · Wood River scored early and often at Kimberly on Wednesday as Bradley was the pitching/hitting star for the softball girls coached by Dale Martin, Jim Bradley, Jimberly Rooney and Jeff Martin.

     Bradley (3 hits, 2 runs, 3 RBI) led the Hailey hitting that pushed across four runs in the first, two more in the second and four runs in the fourth for a 9-4 lead that stood up with Kimberly held scoreless for the final four frames.

     Other hitters were junior Ashley Hicks (3 hits, 4 runs, 2 stolen bases), senior Cassidy Cooper (3 hits, double, 2 RBI), junior Samantha Sutton (2 hits), junior Lacy Harrington (2 hits, 2 RBI) and senior Shelby Cooper (2 runs, 1 RBI).

     Head coach Dale Martin said, “We played a very good game on defense with only two errors and no unearned runs.

     “Our pitching has really improved with the addition of (freshman) Blair Radford. She takes a lot of pressure off of Brittney, who we can keep under the 100-pitch count to save her arm.

     “Ashley Hicks (shortstop) continues to play well on offense and defense. Shelby Cooper is playing well at second base and getting some key hits. Lacy Harrington, Cassidy Cooper and Sammy Sutton are all playing well.”

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