Sequim youths battle for playoff glory

With much of the country celebrating the nation’s Independence Day last weekend, five Sequim Little League squads were in action at district playoff tournaments in Poulsbo, Gig Harbor and Port Orchard.

Four teams are still alive in the playoff hunt as of Sunday night. See for updates and scores.

Sequim juniors crush NK, Key

What a way to open the tourney.

Sequim’s 13- and 14-year-old juniors squad blasted North Kitsap American/National by a 20-0 count in Poulsbo July 5 behind three shutout innings from Demiree Briones and two more from Columbia Haupt.

The juniors followed that with an 18-1 win against Key Peninsula Sunday — again with Briones working three innings and Columbia Haupt finishing it off — giving them a berth in the tournament championship game against either Key Peninsula or North Kitsap at 3 p.m. on July 13.

“They are just banging that ball,” manager Shelley Haupt said, noting her team used the Sequim Baseball U-18 batting cages free of charge in June. “I think the numbers speak for themselves — they’re good. They’ve worked really hard and they want this.”

A win gives the Sequim juniors the title and state berth; a loss means the two teams play again at 6 p.m. that same night, with the winner moving on to state.

“We plan on winning state — that’s the whole idea,” Shelley Haupt said. “(But) I’m not sure what we’re up against.”

11-12 girls take 2 of 3

In any sport, this was a blowout.

Sequim’s 11- and 12-year-old softball all-stars crushed Key Peninsula 37-0 in a mercy rule-shortened, four-inning affair July 1 in Poulsbo to open their district tournament.

The resounding win included an 18-run first inning.

“We did not try to run up the score to embarrass anyone, but in tournament ball you do not hold back,” said manager Dave Bentz. “I was proud of the girls defensively, holding the other team to a shutout.”

Sequim’s luck ran out on Saturday, however, losing a 7-6 decision to Bainbridge Island after a close play at home plate.

The Sequim all-stars responded with a solid, 10-1 victory against the Jefferson County team on Sunday, helping them to advance to a July 7 match-up against Bainbridge Island, needing to beat the islanders twice to take the tourney title (results were not available at press time).

Karen Lewis, the Sequim Little League safety officer, noted that the Sequim 11-12 majors team raised about $1,500 with the car wash and Krispy Kreme doughnut sale on June 28.

Girls 9-10 slip against JeffCo

Sequim’s youngest softball squad met a humbling fate at the hands of a Jefferson County team July 6 in their opening game of the district playoffs, falling 36-9.

The Sequim team is back in action against Bainbridge Island at noon, July 12, at Snider Park in Poulsbo, needing to win three straight for the district title.

9-10 boys rebound with win

Call the first one a warm-up.

After falling to South Kitsap Southern by a shell-shocking 16-0 score July 2, Sequim’s 9-10 boys blasted back with a 13-1 win against Port Townsend in Gig Harbor Saturday.

Daniel Harker got the win on the mound, going all five innings and striking out seven P.T. batters.

Harker helped himself at the plate by going 3-for-4 with two RBIs while Jake Smith added three hits, two RBIs and solid defense in center field. Nick Faunce slammed two doubles and drove in a pair as well. Each Sequim batter reached base.

“Always good to get that first win,” said coach Rick Dryke.

Sequim was scheduled to play the loser of the South Kitsap West/Bainbridge Island contest July 8 — results were unavailable at press time.

11-12 boys fall

Playing their third game in three days — and needing a win to stay alive in the Little League 11- and 12-year-old tournament — Sequim’s boys all-star squad came up short against North Kitsap American 8-2 in Port Orchard on June 30.

The Sequim team opened with a 15-2 loss to North Mason June 28, then stopped North Kitsap National 7-5 on June 29.

“The boys played their hearts out but ran out of steam,” said Betty Bates, a Sequim Little League official. “We had opportunities but had a few fielding errors that we couldn’t come back from.”

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