LACEY — It was a prospect that was difficult to fathom when South Kitsap lost its first two league games.
But after defeating Bellarmine Prep 5-0 on Wednesday night, the Wolves will play for the Class 4A Narrows League Tournament championship at 6:30 p.m. Friday against Olympia at Lacey’s Regional Athletic Complex.
South (15-4), which has won five consecutive games, again left little doubt about the outcome early. After Kevin Whatley drew a leadoff walk in the first inning, right-handed starter Harry Stenberg hit Cody Wolfe with a pitch. Both scored on singles by Tyler Pinkerton and Jesse Moore.
The Wolves increased their lead to 3-0 in the second inning when Pinkerton, who went 2 for 4, singled to score Tiler Moore.
South’s two-out hitting extended to the third inning when Alek Morrison doubled to score Jesse Moore, who went 2 for 3 with a double. Tom Simpson also scored on the play on a throwing error.
Coach Marcus Logue was not entirely satisfied with the offense, though. The Wolves’ five runs are the fewest they have scored during their winning streak.
“We need to make sure we’re finishing,” Logue said. “I felt like offensively after we had those five runs we kind of settled and changed our approach at the plate.”
It was more than enough support for right-handed starter Josh Johnston. His biggest challenge came in the third inning when he faced a bases-loaded situation with one out. Johnston struck out George Foley and Stenberg to end the threat.
“I think he was really excited to be throwing in this game,” Logue said. “The key for him was just settling down and realizing that he’s got a defense behind him.”
The win was significant because of how it positions South for the 4A West Central District Tournament, which begins Tuesday at Kent Memorial. If the Wolves defeat Olympia tonight they will play 4A South Puget Sound League’s No. 3 seed. Otherwise, they will face the first-place team from that league.
Neither will be a loser-out situation. South avoided opening districts with a loser-out game by beating the Lions (12-7).
“We did not want to be in that position,” Logue said. “We did not want to put ourselves under that pressure.”
South Kitsap 5, Bellarmine Prep 0
Bellarmine Prep 000 000 0 — 0 4 2
South Kitsap 212 000 0 — 5 8 2
Josh Johnston, Michael Wood (6) and Tyler Pinkerton. Harry Stenberg and Michael Ota.
Leading hitters—Jesse Moore (SK) 2-3 2 2B RBI run, Tyler Pinkerton (SK) 2-4 2 RBI, Alek Morrison (SK) 1-2 2 RBI.