Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal Archive Edition

Bringing you the best coverage of Snoqualmie Valley sports

National tournament dreams for one Valley softball player dashed

What was turning into a nice run in the loser-out bracket for a Mount Si softball star and her summer team down at the Premier Girls Fastpitch nationals in California ended abruptly this morning thanks to a big inning.

The Beverly Bandits, a top team out of the Chicago area, scored seven runs in the fourth inning to respond to a challenge from the Washington Ladyhawks Miller team and hand the Puyallup-based squad, which features Mount Si senior-to-be Maura Murphy, an 8-4 loss which knocked the Ladyhawks out of the tournament. WLH had scored twice in the third to break a 1-1 tie and take the lead, before the Bandits’ bats exploded in the fateful fourth.

Murphy went 0-2 with a run scored; she did not start the contest but served as a courtesy runner for teammate Hannah Melick and scored in the third on an error by the Bandits pitcher on a ball hit by another ‘Hawk, Ashley Thompson. Mellick hit a home run in the contest, but by the time that big hit took place – the bottom of the seventh – the result was pretty much in stone.

The Ladyhawks couldn’t overcome five errors in what turned out to be an error-filled game similar to the one which took place a couple days ago against a team from Florida.

WLH made it to that game by winning both late last night and this morning. In the game which took place late last night, after the ‘Hawks dispatched a team from Oklahoma, WLH’s offense exploded late to help the ‘Hawks win 9-3 over the East Cobb Bullets out of suburban Atlanta. Murphy had her best game of the tournament, going 2-4 with an RBI.

This morning, WLH needed a clutch hit in a key spot to score a win in an excellent pitcher’s duel with the California Grapettes out of Stockton. Murphy went 0-1 before being lifted midway through the game for a defensive replacement, but it was teammate Erika Smyth who was the heroine in this one, helping lift the Ladyhawks to the win.

Smyth’s single in the sixth scored Yvonne Rericha with the game’s lone run in the 1-0 decision. Pitchers Madi Schreyer and Cara Custer combined on a four-hit shutout.

Murphy finished the tournament hitting .214, but despite the low numbers, her OPS average was a solid .944. Fans can look for a lot from her next spring with Mount Si softball, then in the future with George Washington University, whom she has committed to playing for starting in 2013.

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Written by Rhett Workman

August 5, 2011 at 4:11 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

North Bender’s chance at world glory on the water falls just short

A North Bend teen’s dreams of being a world rowing champion came to an end yesterday at the World Junior Rowing Championships in Eton, England.

2011 Mount Si graduate Austin Bolves, one of several Wildcat 2011’ers to sign Division I college letters of intent last school year, to row for the UW this fall, was paired with a Portland rower, Michael Evans, in Team USA’s entry at the worlds in the junior men’s pairs race. The USA finished third in its heat race, clocking 7:24.96, and did not make the semifinals. They will race again in a consolation round today.

The USA in their heat competed against Greece, South Africa, France, Chile and Hungary, with the Greek and South African boats winning the two slots to the semis.

Bolves and fellow Mount Si grad Megan Hutchison both will be rowing for the UW crew teams this fall. Those two were among nearly 30 Mount Si Class of 2011 grads who signed college letters of intent this past school year.

Written by Rhett Workman

August 5, 2011 at 7:11 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Local club baseball team’s national title hopes dashed in heartbreaking fashion in San Diego

Several Valley players saw their baseball championship dreams end in heartbreaking fashion, as their club team’s run in a national tournament came to a quick end with two tough losses.

The O’Brien Autogroup’s U-16 team, based in Bellevue, fell in both games at the USABF’s World Series in San Diego  1-0, first Wednesday to the San Diego Falcons team, then again yesterday by that same score, this time to the California Cobras club. The two losses knocked them out of the tournament after they started out very well, winning four of five first-round games.

In the loss Wednesday, which was in 14 innings, O’Brien was only able to get three hits the entire game. Two of those were by Mount Si player Carson Breshears. Fellow Valleyites Gunnar Buhner, Connor Swift, and Griffin McLain all went hitless in their at-bats. Swift and McLain attend Mount Si while Buhner attends Eastside Catholic.

Yesterday’s loss was in regulation, as Swift got the call on the mound and gave up the game’s lone run, in the fourth. He only allowed four hits and three walks, striking out five, so despite the defeat, Swift pitched very well in his six innings of work.

Breshears and McLain were hitless at the plate; O’Brien picked up just five hits total.

Written by Rhett Workman

August 5, 2011 at 7:08 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Valley players with mixed results on softball diamond at national tournaments

It was a mixed result for Valley youth softball players competing in national tournament play yesterday.

First, in Midland, TX, at the ASA U-14 nationals, the Northwest Ladysharks Wetherbee softball team’s dreams of a national softball championship are over, as they fell in convincing fashion.

The Kirkland-based team, with Mount Si sophomores to-be Celine Fowler, Rachael Picchena, Nikki and Jenny Carroll, fell to the Scottsdale (AZ) Fever 8-1 in a loser-out contest. This ended a great postseason run for the Sharks, who got their berth after a dramatic run through the loser-out bracket in the Seattle regionals to take the national berth from that tournament.

Meanwhile, things were much better down in Huntington Beach, CA, for another local team with a Mount Si player.

The Washington Ladyhawks’ U-18 Miller scored a pair of blowout wins to remain alive in the Premier Girls Fastpitch national tournament. In their first game of the day, Ladyhawks pitchers Alleyah Armendariz and Ashley Thompson combined on a no-hitter, blanking the Chaos Gold out of suburban Philadelphia 8-0. WLH scored runs in all five innings, and were aided by seven errors from the ladies out of Philly. Mount Si senior-to-be Maura Murphy did not start the contest for WLH, but got a chance to run the bases late in the game, failing to score.

In the second game, the ‘Hawks rolled over the Tulsa (OK) Eagles, 9-0. Murphy, who has verbally committed to play college softball at George Washington University, went 1-2 with a walk and a run scored. She got a single in the third, then scored one of the Ladyhawks’ four runs of that frame on a single by Armendariz and subsequent error by the Tulsa left fielder.

WLH plays again today.

Written by Rhett Workman

August 5, 2011 at 7:05 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Updates from the softball diamond

We have some updates for you on Mount Si softball players with their club teams at national tournaments today.

First, in Huntington Beach, CA, the Washington Ladyhawks Miller team won their first game of the Premier Girls Fastpitch U-18 Nationals this morning, taking a 4-1 decision in an error-filled contest over the Lady Gators Gold Stump team out of West Palm Beach, FL. The ‘Hawks were able to pull it out despite committing four of the six total errors committed by the two teams in the contest.

Mount Si senior-to-be Maura Murphy, who has verbally committed to George Washington University, got the start at second for the Puyallup-based Ladyhawks, and went 0-1 with a strikeout before being pinch-hit for late in the contest.

The game-changing moment for the Ladyhawks happened in the bottom of the third. With the score tied 1-1 after the two teams exchanged runs in the opening frame and a runner on, WLH’s Megan Cooley singled, then things really got interesting. The baserunner, Rogers High (Puyallup) senior-to-be Lana Van Dyken, was able to score on an error by the Gators’ first baseman. Cooley, a senior-to-be up at Mill Creek’s Jackson High School, then was able to score on a second error, this time by the Gator pitcher.

The Hawks added an insurance run in the sixth, then rode the arm of Cara Custer to seal it. She fired a complete-game three-hitter, striking out 11. Custer, who graduated this spring from Spanaway Lake High School and will be pitching next spring for Texas Tech, had a no-hitter going for 4 2/3 innings before the Gators pounded a pair of hits in the fifth.

The win advanced WLH into a game which has just gone final with the So Cal Athletics. The A’s, out of the Los Angeles area, won the game 2-0.

The key moment happened in the fifth, when the A’s Erin Ashby hit a two-RBI single off of ‘Hawks  pitcher Madi Schreyer, a junior-to-be at Woodinville High School.

Murphy got a single in the fifth for her first hit of the tournament; she had been 0-7 prior to the hit.

A’s pitcher Delanie Gourley fired a complete game two-hitter to get the win in the circle.

WLH plays again tomorrow.

In Midland, TX, at the ASA U-14 nationals, the NW Ladysharks Wetherbee team finds itself in the loser-out round after falling this morning in the opening round of the playoffs.

LSW, a Kirkland-based team with Mount Si sophomores to-be Celine Fowler, Rachael Picchena, Nikki and Jenny Carroll, went down to the Texas Aces Express out of the Houston area 4-1. Today’s loss came after a win yesterday over a Salt Lake City-area team which gave them the #3 seed out of their first round pool.

The Ladysharks resume play tomorrow needing to keep winning to stay alive in the tournament.

Written by Rhett Workman

August 3, 2011 at 4:34 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Ladyhawks fall twice to California teams at PGF nationals

It was a tough night last night for a Wildcat softball player, senior-to-be Maura Murphy, and her Washington Ladyhawks Miller teammates, as they suffered two big defeats at the PGF nationals in Huntington Beach, CA.

In the first game, the Ladyhawks were blown out 13-2 in four innings by the San Jose, CA, Sting. Murphy did not start the game but got a pinch-hitting appearance late in the game and went 0-1. The Sting scored runs in every inning, and were aided considerably by defensive miscues from the ‘Hawks; WLH committed five errors, three by one player alone.

The nightcap was not much better, as the Ladyhawks were shut out 7-0 by the Lady Magic out of suburban Sacramento. Murphy started the game at second base and went 0-2 at the plate. WLH bats as a whole struggled to get much going, only getting two hits off of Lady Magic P Ally Carda, a 2011 high school graduate from Elk Grove, CA, who will be pitching at UCLA next spring. Carda struck out eight WLH hitters.

The Ladyhawks continue play today at the PGF tournament.

Written by Rhett Workman

August 3, 2011 at 7:41 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Your Tuesday afternoon update, 8-2-11

News today:

-Big item from San Diego, where a local club baseball team with four Valley athletes is sitting pretty after a strong finish to their first round of play at a top national tournament this morning.

The O’Brien Autogroup U-16 team scored a 3-2 win over the Gladiators out of the Anaheim, CA, area. Griffin McLain led the Valley players’ efforts, going 2-2 with a run scored. The Mount Si player has raised his batting average to a solid .276 after having been at one point earlier this season under .200. Fellow Wildcat Carson Breshears went 0-3 and another Mount Si player, Connor Swift, went 0-1. Gunnar Buhner, a Fall City resident who plays for Eastside Catholic, went 1-1 with a run.

The win for O’Brien helped them finish the opening pool stage of play with a 4-1 record, which should be good enough for a strong seeding going into the playoff portion of the tournament, which starts tomorrow.

-And we have one minor correction as well, more an addition. We failed to mention in our story yesterday about the local rugby players from Mount Si that there was a fourth MSHS’er who also participated in that winning effort by the Eastside team to take the state U-19 title this past weekend. Class of 2010 grad Tino Paophavihanh also was part of the team, joining fellow Wildcats Aladdin and Maverick Schirmer and Shelby Williams in that strong effort this past weekend. We thank the Schirmers’ dad, Fred, for letting us know by the way about this.

Written by Rhett Workman

August 2, 2011 at 4:00 pm

Posted in Uncategorized