[Editor’s Note: The Wilder Baseball Club won the Dick Brown Memorial Firecracker Classic championship game Sunday evening, beating the Centerfield Roosters 15-5. Details on the game will be on www.peninsuladailynews.com tomorrow evening and in Tuesday’s Peninsula Daily News sports edition.]
PORT ANGELES — Relying on outstanding defense and patience at the plate, the Wilder Baseball Club held off a good Centerfield Roosters 18U team 8-2 to qualify for the Dick Brown Memorial Firecracker Classic championship game.
Wilder (13-2) went into that championship game 4-0 in the Firecracker Classic tournament and winners of 10 games in a row.
“It’s been a perfect storm the last two weeks,” said coach Karl Myers. He was most proud that his team’s pitching and defense had not given up more than two runs in any game in the Firecracker Classic.
Myers also said his players are running smart on the basepaths, being aggressive. Wilder stole three bases in the game and not a single runner was thrown out on the basepaths.
“We’re always looking at taking the extra base,” Myers said.
Wilder played errorless ball behind pitcher Hayden Woods, who gave up four hits and two earned runs, while striking out four in six solid innings. The play of the game was a leaping over-the-shoulder catch by first baseman Bo Bradow on a blooper into shallow right field that had a chance to go for a double.
Reliever Brian Shimko also made a great play in the seventh when the Roosters were threatening with a leadoff runner on base. He snagged a dangerous hot line drive hit directly at him and doubled up the runner at first to quickly snuff out the threat. The trio of Milo Whitman, Gavin Guerrero and Bradow turned a double play to snuff out a potential Centerfield rally in the fourth.
Woods said that pitching with a solid defense gives him a lot of confidence.
“I have backup behind me,” Woods said.
At the plate, Wilder strung together nine hits and eight walks to manufacture eight runs.
Ethan Flodstrom was 3 for 4 with a run scored, a stolen base and an RBI, while Bradow was 2 for 3 with a double, a run scored and an RBI. Ian Miller was 1 for 4 with two RBIs and Matt Bainbridge had a full scoring line, going 1 for 1 with a run, an RBI and a bases-loaded walk. Gavin Guerrero walked three times, scored a run and stole a base. Joel Wood had a run scored, a stolen base, a walk and two RBIs.
Wilder is primarily made up of Port Angeles Roughriders, but the team also has some big contributors from Sequim such as Miller and Johnnie Young and Bainbridge from Chimacum.
Myers said the kids from Sequim, Chimacum, Forks and Port Townsend are fitting right in with the Port Angeles kids.
“The coolest part is bringing the kids together. They’re really hitting their stride as a group,” Myers said.
“This year, we’ve really bonded as a team. If someone makes an error, everyone has their back,” Woods said.
For results of Sunday night’s championship, go to www.peninsuladailynews.com and look in Tuesday’s edition of the newspaper.
Wilder 8, Centerfield 2
CF 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 — 2 4 2
Wilder 0 3 1 1 0 3 x — 8 9 0
WP: Woods LP: Yeakley
CF — Yeakley 5.2IP, 8H, 4ER, 2K, 8BB; Laurenza 0.1IP, H.
Wilder — Woods 6IP, 4H, 2ER, 4K, 0BB; Shimko 1IP, 0H, 2BB.
CF — Ossencop 1-2, R, BB; Block 1-2; Laurenza 1-2; Reitzenstein 1-3.