Vetters’ misses no-hitter, settles for victory

After nearly giving up on Travis Vetters as a pitcher, South Kitsap High School baseball coach Elton Goodwin was determined to see the senior succeed on the mound Thursday in a non-league home game against Central Kitsap.

Vetters responded, taking a no-hit bid into the sixth inning and leading the Wolves to a 3-1 win.

Four outs away from a no-hitter, Chris Owens recorded CK’s first hit, and eventually scored.

Because it was a game that didn’t count in the standings, Goodwin said it was an ideal situation to put in Vetters.

“I was real pleased with the way he played,” Goodwin said. “He threw 92 pitches in six innings and walked only three.”

The home plate umpire’s obvious high strike zone played into the hands of Vetters and CK pitcher Chris Owens, who was almost equally impressive with six strikeouts.

SK took advantage of a pair of CK fielding blunders to get across the first run.

Tyler Mayfield ran out an infield single. He advanced to second base on a steal, but the throw from CK catcher Tyler Moyer whizzed past diving shortstop Jake Higgs.

Mayfield took third on the play and scored on another throwing error to give SK a 1-0 lead.

The Wolves tacked on two more runs in the fifth inning.

Phil Thomas led off with a single and took second on a bobble from left fielder Josh Goffin.

Mayfield’s flyout was deep enough to advance Thomas to third base.

After Boya Quichocho walked, Vetters roped an RBI double into the right-center gap to score Thomas.

Quichocho made it to third before scoring on Josh Showers’ RBI single.

The scoring rally should have continued when Aaron Cunningham apparently ran out a grounder. But he was called out and Brandon Nickerson struck out looking on a very high fastball.

The poor call caused Goodwin to briefly stare down the umpire but no words were exchanged.

“There’s not much you can do there,” Goodwin said. “If I say anything I’ll get blackwalled.”

The win pushed SK’s winning streak to three games but could easily push it to five games next week against North Kitsap and Bremerton.

“Now we’ve got a big second half of the league coming up,” Goodwin said. “We need to win next week and we’ve got to bump off Port Angeles and Gig Harbor.”

After losing to both of those teams earlier in the season, Goodwin said there is no wiggle room for a league title without wins against those two teams.

“We’ve just got to keep playing and keep getting better.”

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