Peninsula Daily News
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Travis Paynter tossed a no-hitter Sunday in Wilder’s fourth game of the tournament to lead the area Senior Babe Ruth team to the title game with a 12-0 win in five innings over River Sox.
Paynter helped his own cause with a two-run double.
Jordan Shepherd and Zach Withrow also had two-run doubles for Wilder, and Brady Konopaski and Nick Johnston contributed two hits apiece.
Wilder made its way to the championship game with four blowout wins, opening with a 11-1 victory over River Sox, then beating Centerfield Junior 8-1 and Brightline by a 9-1 score.
Wilder was finally tested in the title game matchup with Centerfield Senior on Sunday.
Centerfield plated a pair of runs in the bottom of the first inning to take a 2-0 lead.
Wilder responded in the top of the second with five runs to take a 5-2 lead before Centerfield scored three in the third to even the score.
It stayed 5-5 until the top of the sixth. Wilder’s Brett Wright led off with a double, advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Dusty Bates and then scored the game-winning run on a single by Larsson Chapman.
Wilder’s lead looked like it would be short-lived when Centerfield had runners on the corners with one out in the bottom of the sixth, but Konopaski fielded a grounder, stepped on second and threw to first for a 6-3 double play that got pitcher Tanner Rhodefer out of the inning.
“That was huge for us,” Wilder coach Mike Politika said.
Rhodefer earned the win and was named the game MVP of the championship game. He struck out four and held Centerfield scoreless over four innings in relief of starter Jordan Shepherd.
“Tanner was lights out,” Politika said. “He shut down a really good hitting team.”
In Wilder’s tournament opener, Curan Bradley pitched four innings and allowed River Sox just one hit while striking out five batters in a 11-1 win in four innings.
Wright had an RBI double and scored a run. He joined Konopaski, Chapman, Evan Hurn and Rhodefer as Wilder players with two hits in the game.
Konopaski had two hits in each game, continue his blistering start to the season by going 10 for 14 in the two-day tournament with four runs and five RBIs.
In seven games, Konopaski is 15 for 20 with eight runs and eight RBIs.
“He’s tearing it up,” Politika said. “He’s definitely a spark plug for us.”
Konopaski has been just as important in the field as Wilder’s starting shortstop.
“He’s been really solid at shortstop, making some spectacular plays,” Politika said.
“Brady’s leading the charge for us offensively and defensively.”
In the second game, James Grubb pitched Wilder to a 8-1 win over Centerfield Junior in an 8 p.m. game Saturday night under the lights at renowned Olympic Stadium.
Wilder also played the championship game at Olympic Stadium. The other three games were played at Hoquiam High School.
Grubb went four innings on the mound, striking out six and giving up just two hits.
“Grubb had a really good game pitching,” Politika said.
Wilder had only six hits but walked eight times.
Mudd doubled and Paynter, Grubb and Rhodefer each added singles to go along with Konopaski’s two hits.
The game was called after six innings due to the tournament’s two-hour time limit.
Wilder ace Nick Johnston took the mound in the third game and allowed Brightline just one hit over four innings with four strikeouts.
Ricky Crawford relieved Johnston and fanned five in three innings.
Wilder pounded out 12 hits, including two each by Chapman and Konopaski, a triple by Rhodefer and doubles by Shepherd, Eathen Boyer and Chapman.
Johnston drove in two runs, as did Shepherd and Rhodefer.
“Rhodefer had a really good tournament, defensively and with clutch hitting,” Politika said of the 16-year-old from Sequim.
In five games, Wilder committed only two errors.
Wilder improves to 7-0 on the season. Politika said the entire team is playing so well that it has been hard to give everyone the playing time they deserve.
“They’re all earning time, they’re competing with each other and they seem to like each other,” he said.
Wilder used eight different pitchers over the weekend, with no pitcher making more than one appearance.
Wilder returns home for a three-game series with Pac Tech on Saturday and Sunday at Civic Field.
The teams will play two seven-inning games Saturday starting at 5 p.m. and a nine-inning game Sunday at 11 a.m.
Pac Tech, which is based in Longview, came to Civic Field last year and won three of four.
“They’ll definitely be a test for us,” Politika said. “They’ll be more like Centerfield [Senior] was.”
Wilder 11, River Sox 1 (4 innings)
Wilder 0 2 8 1 — 11 13 0
River Sox 0 0 0 1 — 1 1 1
Wilder: Bradley 4 IP, H, ER, 7 BB, 5 K.
Wilder: Wright 2-3, 2B, R, RBI; Konopaski 2-3, 3 RBI; Chapman 2-3, R, RBI; Hurn 2-3, R; Rhodefer 2-2, 2 R, RBI; Boyer 1-2, R, RBI; Crawford 1-3, 2 R, RBI; Mudd 1-4, R, RBI.
Wilder 8, Centerfield Junior 1
Centerfield 1 0 0 0 0 0 — 1 3 1
Wilder 0 0 7 0 1 x — 8 6 0
Wilder: Grubb 4 IP, 2 H, ER, 2 BB, 6 K; Mudd 2 IP, H, BB, 2 K.
Wilder: Konopaski 2-2, R; Mudd 1-1, 2B, R; Grubb 1-2, R, 2 RBI; Paynter 1-2.
Wilder 9, Brightline 1
Brightline 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 — 1 3 3
Wilder 0 2 6 1 0 0 x — 9 12 1
Wilder: Johnston 4 IP, H, ER, 2 BB, 4 K; Crawford 3 IP, 2 H, 2 BB, 5 K.
Wilder: Chapman 2-4, 2B, R, RBI; Shepherd 1-1, 2B, R, 2 RBI; Rhodefer 1-2, 3B, 2 RBI; Johnston 1-3, R, 2 RBI; Boyer 1-2, 2B, R; Konopaski 2-3.
Wilder 12, River Sox 0 (5 innings)
River Sox 0 0 0 0 0 — 0 0 3
Wilder 6 0 6 0 x — 12 9 1
Wilder: Paynter 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 4 K.
Wilder: Paynter 1-1, 2B, R, 2 RBI; Shepherd 1-1, 2B, R, 2 RBI; Withrow 1-2, 2B, R, 2 RBI; Johnston 2-3, R; Konopaski 2-3, 2 R; Mudd 0-2, R, 2 RBI.
Wilder 6, Centerfield Senior 5
Wilder 0 5 0 0 0 1 0 — 6 6 0
Centerfield 2 0 3 0 0 0 0 — 5 10 1
Wilder: Shepherd 3 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 4 BB, 2 K; Rhodefer 4 IP, 4 H, 2 BB, 4 K.
Wilder: Konopaski 2-3, 2B, 2 RBI; Wright 1-3, 2B, R, RBI; Gochnour 1-3, 2B, R, RBI; Chapman 1-2, R, RBI; Mudd 1-2, R, RBI.