EAST BREMERTON — The Olympic College baseball team had its chances to pull out the upset but No. 1 Edmonds came up with the clutch hits in extra innings to hand the Rangers a 2-1 loss in the 12th Monday at Legion Field.
The Northwest Athletic Conference North Region game had been pushed back from the weekend due to inclement weather. Sunday, the Rangers traveled to Edmonds and lost to the Tritons 11-1 and 6-2.
Monday’s effort was definitely what Olympic coach Ryan Parker wanted to see from his players, just not the outcome.
“We’re a good team too,” he said. “It’s just getting these guys to believe, ‘Hey, we can compete with anybody.’ I think up until this weekend we’ve had that belief.
“We got humbled a little bit this weekend but today it shows we can compete — and not only compete but beat these teams if we do what we’re capable of doing.”
Monday’s game went scoreless through five innings before Edmonds scored first in the top of the sixth on a bases-loaded single by Nathan Sagdahl. But that would be it as Olympic pitcher Jared Scott got out of the inning on a strikeout and a pop up to first baseman Austin Bayne.
The Rangers answered in the bottom half of the inning. Ben Koler reached first on a hit-by-pitch and Scott Gunther singled to put two runners on for OC. After a strikeout, Hunter Blunt put the ball in play and was credited with a single. An error by shortstop Yugo Hamakawa allowed Koler to score.
Both teams were kept scoreless despite leaving runners on base until the top of the 12th. That’s when the Tritons went ahead after loading the bases on two hits, a balk, and a walk. On a 2-2 count, Evan Hurn flew out to right field to score Talon Yerbury, 2-1.
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The Rangers’ Bryan Ponce was hit by a pitch in the bottom of the 12th to put the tying run on base. Ponce advanced to third on back-to-back on groundout sacrifices. Jeffrey Cochran’s hit lined right to Edmonds shortstop who threw to first for the final out.
“From what we’ve seen this year they’re by far the best team we’ve played,” Parker said of Edmonds. “That’s the level we’re trying to get to. Now it’s good for these guys to see where we need to be if we’re going to compete on a daily basis with those types of teams.”
The Rangers (4-3 North, 13-12 overall) sit in third place in the North while Edmonds improved to 3-0 (22-2 overall). Olympic will play a home-and-home series against Shoreline this weekend. The Rangers host the Dolphins Saturday at Legion at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday, Olympic travels to Shoreline for a doubleheader beginning at noon and 3 p.m.