Harrison’s first high school homer, Gronewald’s two-RBI hit guide Mount Si softball to comeback win over Skyline, plus the ladies’ diamond cuts on this Saturday

To softball. The week was a busy one, and it started out not so well, for Mount Si’s softball team. They fell in a close one Monday to Inglemoor after the Vikings scored runs late in the contest and the Wildcats were unable to respond, then fell again Wednesday despite making a huge comeback against Newport. Yesterday, though, Mount Si rebounded with a nice win over Bothell and they yesterday looked to build off that with another strong performance against Skyline. It seems that this team may be starting to come together based on how they responded to some late adversity against the Spartans, and now it seems that it’s possible they may sneak into the postseason.

The first high school homer from freshman Vera Harrison sparked a four-run sixth, and that helped the Wildcats handle Skyline 5-2 in the rain at Centennial Fields in Snoqualmie.

“That feels so good. I think the story of our offense this year has been never giving up. Even when they’ve had some bad games our offense has stayed pretty strong and never giving up,” said a happy Mount Si coach Lauren Dumoulin, as her team notched its first win streak of the year with the back-to-back wins.

It was a pitcher’s duel early between Mount Si senior ace Lauren Wilbourne and Skyline senior ace Bailie Stewart. The two pitchers for the most part kept opposing hitters at bay, but the Wildcats got the first salvo in the second. Mount Si was able to load the bases with one thanks to walks to Hayley Benham and Hope Bostick and a single by Jaclyn Huntzinger. After Molly Wilbourne struck out for the second out, junior shortstop Sam Simmons came to the plate, and one theme about Simmons this year has been her consistent offense. Coming off a two-double effort against Bothell, Simmons continued her strong offensive push as she lined the first offering she saw from Stewart into left field to score Bostick putting Mount Si on the board. Simmons finished 2-4 with a run and that RBI pacing the Wildcats.

But, as the game rolled on, and Mount Si was once again missing opportunities to get on the board – they got two runners on in the fourth with two out but saw Simmons ground out to end that frame – it was shaping up to be again like the Inglemoor game on Monday where even though Lauren Wilbourne was pitching well, the margin for error was going to be razor-thin, and as such not fair to the Wildcat ace. Skyline tied things in the fifth with two out, as Summer Jones singled to score courtesy runner Ashley Chou. Wilbourne got out of the inning with no further damage thanks to a groundout by Skylar Maloney that ended the frame.

Skyline took the lead in the sixth. Taylor Juenke hit a fly ball to Benham in right field, who attempted to make a great diving catch, but in those situations, it’s a 50/50 proposition, and unfortunately for the Wildcat senior, it did not go in her favor, as the ball flew right past her and allowed the Spartan senior to hit an inside-the-park homer putting Skyline in front 2-1.

Mount Si then came up for their half of the sixth and stepped up Harrison. Om a 1-0 count, she took a Stewart offering and crushed it over the left field fence for that special first high school homer. “My goal was to just be aggressive in the box, and it worked,” Harrison said, and the freshman’s heroics tied things at 2-2. Huntzinger and Molly Wilbourne then recorded outs for Mount Si before all heck broke loose with two outs. Simmons singled to start it, then Lauren Wilbourne reached base on what should have been a routine infield fly out to the pitcher, except it landed behind a who appeared to be surprised Stewart and by the time she figured out what was going on, Wilbourne was on first. After both runners advanced on an error by Skyline’s Juenke at shortstop, Abby Gronewald came up to bat. As Mount Si’s arguably most feared hitter, she knows what she needs to do in difference-making situations.

“I knew there was an opportunity for me to lock up the game for our team,” the Fairfield University-bound junior said. “We were tied and it was a big situation so I was just looking for something to drive and when she (Stewart) threw that changeup out of hand, I knew I just had to wait on it.” And she did, lining the Stewart change into left field past a diving Jones to score both Simmons and Wilbourne putting the Wildcats in the lead 4-2. Grace Lis then put the icing on the cake, with a single to score Gronewald and close out the Mount Si scoring.

The seventh started out not so well for Harrison, as she misplayed a quickly thrown ball to her by Gronewald on a ground ball by Stewart. But the freshman bounced right back and made three great defensive plays at first base to seal the door shut on this one. In all, Harrison in that last inning and a half really showed herself to be a potential big-game player for this Mount Si team in the coming years. She’s hoping for the same. “I hope a lot more home runs and a lot more time at first base,” Harrison said.

“I love when I get to brag about a freshman,” Dumoulin said. “We always love our freshmen to come in and produce and that’s what Vera’s done all season.” The coach continued, “Her bat in the lineup is pretty deadly.”

Lauren Wilbourne went the distance, allowing two runs, both earned, walking five and striking out three. Jones finished 1-3 with her RBI pacing Skyline.

Mount Si moves to 3-9 on the league schedule, 4-10 on the season overall, and remains 1 ½ games out of the final playoff spots, held by the two teams the Wildcats just beat in both the Spartans and Cougars. They have two games next week against North Creek and Issaquah, teams behind them in the Kingco standings, and who Dumoulin believes are both beatable. So if Mount Si continues on this upward trajectory and gets some help from teams beating Bothell and Skyline, the Wildcats might find themselves backing into a playoff spot.

The coach sure likes that thought. “I just told the girls we’re peaking at the right time,” she said. “We are the team to beat right now, I think.” Gronewald also believes reaching postseason, despite the somewhat long odds of that at the moment, is possible. “I think that’s totally attainable. The way Lauren’s pitching on the mound and the way our bats are, they’re hot right now,” she said. “It’s just all good teamwork.”

Mount Si hosts Issaquah Wednesday at Centennial, then gets North Creek on Friday, also at Centennial. Game times for both games are 4:30 p.m.

Time now for the scoreboard. Scores and stats from Gamechanger and the Gamechanger app, available on Apple IPhones and IPads in their app store.

Kingco 4A: Inglemoor 9, North Creek 3 – While the two schools’ baseball teams were meeting under the lights at Inglemoor’s campus, the Viking and Jaguar ladies went at it on the North Creek campus also under the lights last night, with Inglemoor taking it thanks to a late offensive explosion. The black and gold broke a 3-3 tie with six runs in the seventh. Riley Garcia went 2-3 with a double, two runs scored and two RBI’s pacing the Vikings, and Camryn Scott also had two hits and an RBI for Inglemoor, one of those hits being a triple. Malia Pinder went 2-3 with a run scored leading NC.

Kingco 4A: Newport 13, Issaquah 3 – Noelle Thomas homered and drove in three for the Knights as they exploded for 10 runs over the first two innings to take this one in five at Issaquah High School by mercy rule. Lita Bankson went 3-4 with three runs scored and Taylor Woodey went 2-3 with a double, two runs scored and three RBI’s, both pacing the red and gold. Hanako Hirai went the distance in the circle, allowing three runs, two earned, on five hits, walking two and striking out three. Kelly Hruza and Alexis Bellas each hit a solo homer to pace Issy’s offense.

Kingco 4A: Eastlake 13, Bothell 2 – Eastlake took care of this one early at Bothell High School, scoring eight runs in the first inning to cruise to the mercy-rule win after five. Regan Hines homered to lead the Wolves as part of a 2-3 performance, scoring twice and driving in two more runs. Josie Charles aided the Wolves, going 3-4 with a triple, three runs scored and an RBI, while Emma Bickford added a pair of hits, including a double, and drove in three for Eastlake. Nicole Leadley homered to power the Blue Train.

Cascade: Coupeville 10, South Whidbey 0 – Eight Falcon errors doomed South Whidbey in a battle of island rivals that will be next year a league contest as both schools will be part of the new North Sound Conference that is being formed from the 1A remnants of the soon-to-end Cascade. Katrina McGranahan went the distance for Coupeville, allowing just five hits and two walks while striking out four, and Sarah Wright led the victors at the plate, going 3-4 with two runs scored and an RBI. All nine runs Falcon ace Mackenzee Collins allowed in four innings were unearned as a result of all the Whidbey errors. The senior struck out six.

Kingco 3A: Lake Washington 14, Interlake 4 – Anastasia Kotsakis homered for LW, part of a 3-4 effort that saw her score twice and drive in four more runs, as the Kangs pocketed the blowout mercy rule win at home over the Saints in Kirkland. Haley Brown went 4-4 for L-Dub with a double, scoring four runs and driving in a fifth. Lexi Martin went 1-3 with a double and two runs scored pacing Interlake.

Kingco 3A: Bellevue 14, Mercer Island 6 – The Wolverines won the slugfest on Mercer Island with the help of a seven-run third innings. Kama Boswell led Bellevue, going 3-3 with a double, walk, three runs scored and two RBI’s, while Kelly Treves also had three hits, scoring two runs and driving in three more. Jessica Ramseyer went 2-4 with two runs scored and an RBI guiding Mercer.

Kingco 3A: Liberty 18, Sammamish 0 – Everyone in the Liberty lineup had at least one hit, with most scoring runs or driving them in, too, as the Patriots rolled in a modified Metro mercy rule win (15 runs after three innings) over the Totems in Bellevue. Lauren Collins, Kendall Kauzlarich and Emma Gouge all homered, with the three combining for a total of 11 hits, 10 runs and 12 RBI’s among them in the contest. Collins and Kauzlarich also doubled in the game for Liberty. Alex Isenhart had the lone Sammamish hit allowed by Patriot hurler Sam Garcia, who went the distance, giving up that hit and three walks while striking out two.

Wesco: Marysville-Pilchuck 18, Stanwood 4 – Pilchuck made the short trip up to Stanwood and rolled to a win behind an early offensive explosion; the Tomahawks scored 14 of their runs in the first two innings, including a nine-run second. Cassidy Phelps homered, scoring three runs and driving in three more for M-P, and Lilianne Fischer went 3-4 with a double, three runs scored and four RBI’s. Morgan Saunders homered for Stanwood, driving in three runs for the Spartans.

Wesco: Edmonds-Woodway 6, Mountlake Terrace 5 – Ed-Wood held off the visiting Hawks at home in Edmonds behind Kaitlyn Rust, who went 3-4 with a triple, two runs scored and three RBI’s. Mariah Woolery doubled as part of her own three-hit performance for the Warriors. Jenna Maxfield led Terrace, going 2-4 with a double and triple, and scoring three runs. Kierra Scott had a hit and drove in three runs for the Hawks.

Wesco: Snohomish 5, Everett 0 – You Cedarcrest fans better get used to hearing the name Bailey Greenlee. We’ve mentioned her quite a bit this spring, and the reason for that is she’s a good pitcher. A darn good pitcher. And she was at the top of her game yesterday, throwing a perfect game, striking out seven, as the Panthers won at home. Taylor Khorrami led Snohomish at the plate, going 2-3 with a double, run scored and two RBI’s. Andrea Hedington went 5 1/3 innings, allowing five runs, one earned, on four hits, walking three and striking out two in the circle for the ‘Gulls.

Wesco: Meadowdale 13, Shorecrest 0 – Here’s another name you might want to know about, Red Wolve fans, for next year. Katherine Houghton. She’ll be a junior in 2019, and she dominated in the circle for Meadowdale yesterday, with a no-hitter, striking out 14 as the Mavericks rolled over the Scots in Shoreline. Carrie Petersen led the way for Meadowdale, going 2-4 with a double and triple, scoring two runs and driving in five. Olivia Dimmock paced the Mavericks, with a double as part of a 2-3 effort, scoring a run and driving in two more.

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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