CHIMACUM — East Jefferson saluted its seniors with a pair of five-inning victories against Charles Wright, bumping the academy team 3-0 and 7-5 in a Nisqually League doubleheader.
Senior Owen Thornton went the distance on the hill in the first game, tossing a complete-game shutout with 11 strikeouts while scattering seven hits and a walk.
“Owen was really solid for us on the mound,” coach Ben Lozano said. “It very well might be his best pitching performance of the season. He and Brody [Moore] are our 1-2 punch, and he came through in a very tight game.”
Rhian Popp came through offensively for the Rivals.
“In game one, big contributor was Rhian Popp, he had a nice two-run double and a single,” Lozano said. “We added another insurance run in the fourth, so it was pretty much a pitchers’ duel.”
Thornton did get some defensive assistance to preserve the shutout.
“We got a really nice run-saving catch by Aaron Glanz on a long fly ball to the gap,” Lozano said. “Aaron had to make a run for it and he ran it down deep in the gap, had to really turn and race to it. There were two runners on at the time, so who knows how many they score if they continue that inning. Aaron has been playing great for us out there in center all season long. He really has solidified that spot for us.”
Popp added an RBI single in the second game.
Down 5-3 in its final turn at-bat, East Jefferson had to rally with doubles by Thornton and Chris Fair. “Chris’ hit was really big. We had two outs, so that whole run was huge,” Lozano said. Aaron Glanz came up and hit a single to bring home pinch-runner Hayden Montgomery, and Cash Holmes came up and singled to bring home Glanz.
Brody Moore earned the win on the mound in a back-and-forth second game, striking out the final three batters with runners on to seal the sweep.
“He had to hold them,” Lozano said. “They got a couple runners on base, but Brody struck out the last three batters with the top of the order coming up. And he maxed out his pitch count, so we would have had to put in a new pitcher if he didn’t get all those guys to strike out.”
Lozano said the team saluted seniors Thornton, Fair, Marcus Rich and Nathan Nisbet.
“These were very good ball games. The second one was probably the most exciting for us all season long,” Lozano said. “Especially with it being our senior night.”
East Jefferson (8-10) will visit Vashon in a Class 1A District 3 loser-out playoff game on Monday.
North Kitsap 24, Sequim 3
POULSBO — The Wolves closed out their season with a loss against the No. 3 Vikings.
Senior Connor Bear reached base in all three appearances for Sequim.
Ayden Holland added an RBI single for the Wolves (1-13, 2-17).
North Kitsap 24, Sequim 3
Seq. 0 0 3 0 0 — 3 7 7
NK 3 11 2 8 X — 24 17 2
Sequim: Gray 2IP, 10H, 14R, 2ER, 2BB; McCracken 1.1IP, 7H, 10R, 7ER, 4BB.
North Kitsap: Brockett 3IP, 4H, 3R, ER, BB, K; Steiner IP, H, BB; Dungy IP, 2H, K.
Sequim: Bear 2-2, BB; Holland 1-3, R, RBI; White 1-3, RBI; Laboy 1-2; Lawrence 1-2; Staples 0-1, BB, R.
North Kitsap: Bower 3-5, R, 4RBI; Gore 3-5, 2B, 4R, 3RBI; Burchill 2-3, 3R, 2RBI.
Sports reporter Michael Carman can be contacted at [email protected] news.com.