Girls fall to Tigers but stay in playoff hunt

South Whidbey’s Kelsey Dorpat watches her ball go a bit too far to the right during Wednesday’s 5-3 loss to Granite Falls. - Jeff VanDerford / The Record
South Whidbey’s Kelsey Dorpat watches her ball go a bit too far to the right during Wednesday’s 5-3 loss to Granite Falls.
— image credit: Jeff VanDerford / The Record

The South Whidbey girls fastpitch team scored three runs in the final inning, but Granite Falls pitcher Alyssa Arndt stayed focused, and the Tigers won 5-3.

“The game was wet and sloppy but the cold players on both sides tried to keep the game neat and clean,” noted Falcon coach Chuck Burton. “Outstanding field conditions and the fierce desire of both teams to play prevented the referees from calling the game.”

The game started off scoreless through the first two innings. The Tigers threatened in the second with a couple of hits and a runner headed to third, but the Falcon infield got the ball to Alannah Alber who made the out.

Granite Falls opened up the third by scoring three unearned runs on two Falcon errors.

In the fourth and sixth innings, the Tigers scored one run each. But then, in the bottom of the seventh with the score 5-0 — and Arndt throwing a no-hitter to this point — the Falcons put a rally together scoring three runs on base hits from Amanda Cochran and Alber but fell short, leaving the bases loaded to end the game with a tough 5-3 loss.

Falcon outfielder Allison Wood said Arndt pitched a good game, but the key was the Tigers’ quality defense.

“It was a long, cold and wet game,” Wood recalled. “We scored at the end and came very close to winning. We played well, came together and certainly didn’t let up.”

She said her teammates are confident going into the playoffs.

“We all want to extend the season as long as we can and get to state,” she said.

Before the game, senior honors were bestowed on Rebecca Stratton, Samantha Pope, Jazmyn Graham and Tylyn Linehan.

“This senior class of 2009 fastpitch players are a great group,” Burton said. “They showed a lot of grit and determination and have been a major reason we ended with a winning season. I’ve been honored to be their coach this year.”

South Whidbey ended the regular season with a winning 10-8 record in the Cascade Conference and 12-8 overall.

The Falcons remain in third place. Depending on the outcome of Friday night’s rain-delayed battle between Cedarcrest (9-8) and Archbishop Murphy (16-1), South Whidbey will still move forward.

If Cedarcrest wins, the Falcons will be in fourth and play a crossover game on

May 18. Should Murphy win, the girls will play against a Northwest League opponent at Lynden on Wednesday, May 20.

“Either way, we’re going to be out there playing with all we’ve got,” Wood said.

Jeff VanDerford can be reached at 221-5300 or

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