Neither the Gig Harbor baseball nor the softball clubs had any trouble in their Little League district tournaments, but they knew they would face much tougher competition at the next level.
How the teams have responded has been entirely different.
Both the 9-10 and 10-11 softball clubs dominated last weekend and advanced to the semifinals of their respective state tournaments, but the boys season is now over after losing their first two games of the state tournament.
The Gig Harbor offense exploded for 32 runs in its first two games of the tournament in Kirkland, but it only needed two as the team shut out both Auburn/Kent and Pacwest in the process.
In game one against District 7 champion Pacwest, Adelaide Werner went the distance on the mound, striking out four and allowing just two hits in the 22-0 victory. Werrner also went 5-for-5 with two doubles and a triple.
“(Werner) has been absolutely outstanding,” coach Bob Werner said. “She has had an ouststanding tournament, not allowing or walk in either game, and she has 15 of our 32 rbi’s.”
“But it has been a team effort. Allie Ivester has done an outstanding job behind the plate, the whole defense has been good.”
Werner wasn’t the only offensive star on Saturday. Madison McCutchen went 2-for-5 with four RBIs, and Cameryn Dickens and Allie Irvester both had two-hit games.
It was more of the same on Sunday as Werner went the distance and struck out seven in a 10-0 victory against Auburn/Kent.
Werner went 3-for-3 with a double, and McCutchen added two hits, including a double.
The Gig Harbor girls will play a semifinal matchup against Redmond, and a win will give the team two chances at a state championship.
“Redmond is a very good squad, but if we keep playing like this, I like our chances,” Werner said. “They have a powerhouse lineup so we won’t be able to throw the ball by them. We’ll have to use our offspeed stuff and locate and play good defense. If we do that, I like our chances.”
The Gig Harbor 9-10 all-star team also cruised last the weekend, beating up on District 7 and Upper Valley in its two games at the La Center Community Park in La Center.
The club had one of their closest games of the season in the opener, but the game was never in doubt in a 6-0 win. Gig Harbor National came back the next day and scored 10 runs in the first two innings against Upper Valley. Gig Harbor went on to clobber the District 12 champions, 18-2.
Audrey Allen pitched two innings striking out six of the seven hitters she faced in game two. McKenna Johnston came in for the final two innings with five strikeouts and only allowing two runs to end the game after four innings with an 18-2 victory.
Edyn Picinich had a three run triple in the 3rd inning while the rest of the team all had multiple base hits each.
The victories put the all-stars in a semifinal matchup against Kirkland on Tuesday after press time for the chance to play in the championship round, which will start Thursday.
Gig Harbor National coasted through the district tournament, but couldn’t find the same success at the state level and was elminated after two games in Vancouver.
Gig Harbor had a first-round bye but was dismantled by West Seattle 13-1 in game one on Sunday afternooon, and then again by Pacific on Monday evening.
The early elimination means that the Key Peninsula all-stars are the only boys team that has yet to be eliminated, as the 9-10 year olds and 10-11 year old Gig Harbor squads were eliminated in the district tournament last week.
Gig Harbor Little League will host the 10- and 11-year-old state baseball tournament Saturday through July 27. Bainbridge Island won the District 2 championship with its win against Gig Harbor National and will be the local representative. The state tournament will feature teams from all 13 districts. Games will be played at both Brentin and Carpenter fields throughout the week. Meanwhile, the Key Peninsula Junior all-stars will play in the state tournament Saturday through July 27. Key Peninsula opens play Saturday against Medicine Lake in Spokane.