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Oly hardballers keep pace for league title
Two games, two victories.
That’s the goal for the Olympic baseball team as it vies for an Olympic League championship with two games left on the regular-season schedule.
The Trojans (12-5 overall, 11-3 league) did their part with an 8-3 win over Kingston at home Wednesday to keep pace with fellow Class 3A North Kitsap (12-4, 11-3), which pounded Port Townsend 11-0 the same day.
Riley Crow pitched 5 2/3 innings, striking out 10 on just one earned run to keep Oly in what was a close game through four innings.
But with the score 2-2 in the bottom of the fifth, the Trojans broke it open after Blake Johnson led the inning off with a triple — he had two triples on the day — and later scored on a passed ball to make it 3-2.
Oly pushed a total of six runs across the plate in the fifth and sixth innings combined with clutch hits from Jordan Halstead, who was 1-for-3 with two RBI, and Chris Campbell, who was 2-for-3 with a double and one RBI.
Crow improved to 4-0 on the season.
“He made some huge pitches in huge situations,” said Oly coach Nate Andrews. “He was the key to today.”
Andrews said Crow threw more pitches than he regularly does — the exact number was unavailable — but Crow felt good enough to forge on into the sixth.
“I asked him if he could go some extra and he said he could do it,” Andrews said.
With the win, the Trojans maintained a tie with NK for the top Class 3A spot in the Olympic League. The teams split their head-to-head series, but NK owns the tiebreaker and controls its own destiny thanks to a better record against the league’s Class 3A teams (5-1 as opposed to Oly’s 4-2).
Both Oly and NK wrap up the season against North Mason and Bremerton, which are a combined 4-22 in Olympic League play.
“If we can put the next two games away, then we’ve done our part,” Andrews said.
The only glaring loss on Oly’s league schedule is a 9-8 setback against Port Angeles March 27, when the Roughriders scored five runs in the top of the seventh to secure a come-from-behind victory.
But while Andrews said the PA loss could be the difference in the final league standings, he added his team committed to “starting a new season” before an April 22 game against Klahowya that Oly won 7-0.
The team has since beat Sequim (5-3 April 24) and PA (7-2 Monday) to keep pace with NK.
“Just one game at a time,” Andrews said.
The North Mason game was rescheduled from Tuesday to Monday, starting at 4 p.m. at Olympic. The Trojans end the regular season at Bremerton at 4 p.m. Thursday.