SK puts its state experience in perspective

The South Kitsap High School baseball team watched its early 3-0 lead dissolve before their eyes in the 4A state semifinal game against eventual state champion Woodinville Friday at Cheney Stadium.

A shoddy defense was easily the blame as four errors led to five unearned runs.

The tough part was for the Wolves to come back the next day and play for third place even though they weren’t in the frame of mind to care at first.

But when SK took to the field against Richland Saturday, no one would have known these two teams were playing for third place.

“I think we came ready to play,” senior second baseman Brandon Nickerson said. “Obviously there wasn’t as much motivation as there was yesterday but we still wanted to win. As soon as the first pitch is thrown you’re in (the game) and want to win.”

Senior pitcher/third baseman Travis Vetters said no one ever likes to lose.

But he said the team can take home some pride after the extra-inning battle with Richland.

“That’s the kind of game you don’t mind losing,” Vetters said. “That was just a well-battled game. We didn’t beat ourselves any time in that game. Everybody played their hearts out.”

SK coach Elton Goodwin said he couldn’t have asked any more of his players. “Both teams wanted to win and the score shows that,” he said. “I’m pleased and proud of these guys.”

While the SK program seems to always find itself at state, Vetters admitted their were doubts at the beginning of the season.

After suffering early season losses to Gig Harbor and Port Angeles, there were some lingering questions about the heart of the team, Vetters said.

“A lot of people I’ve talked to said they didn’t expect us to get here,” he said. “But we started to gel and look where it got us.”

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