After a tough loss last week to the eventual South Puget Sound League (SPSL) champs, the Fife Trojans, the Cruisers were facing elimination from the tournament which would end their season.

The Cruisers squared off against the Renton Indians on Tuesday night, April 30, at Liberty Park in Renton. It was a change of pace for them as they played this game in the evening under the lights.

The Indians, who finished in second place in the SPSL North division with a 12-5 overall record, came into the game with the No. 6 seed.

Eatonville sent senior ace Andrew Wiklund to the mound for this important do or die game. Wiklund didn't disappoint.

The Cruisers wasted no time to score in the game. They took over the game in the first inning. 

The Cruisers scored two runs when courtesy runner Ryan Mueller, running for Wiklund, scored on an error by the right fielder. With two outs, senior Josh Kondra stepped to the plate and hit the first pitch he saw to the right field to score Humphrey. Renton got the next batter, Jacob Lucht, to ground into an inning ending fielder's choice. Eatonville led 2-0 after the top half of the first.

Renton battled back and scored a run of their own, when their leadoff batter tripled and then scored on a wild pitch. Wiklund then tightened up his belt buckle and got to work.

He only allowed one run on three hits in his six innings of work. Wiklund finished the game with a season high 12 strikeouts.

"Andy really got in a groove. Great rhythm on the mound, he was hitting his spots and had great command of all his pitches," Coach Mike Moeller said.

"He has been so key for us this year, really rising to the occasion. He is a workhorse on the mound and when he is on, it really sets the tempo for the rest of the team." 

"I am really proud of how the boys played," Moeller continued. "We had some real key two out at-bats that busted the game open late. Our base running was exceptional, we were really able to get some great jumps off the bat and push the action. It was a true team effort up and down the lineup."

The Cruisers picked up a few more runs in the third and fourth innings before they busted out in the fifth inning by putting a four spot on the board to lead 8-1 as they headed into the sixth, where they would add two more insurance runs.

Wiklund gave way to Collin Blake who took over on the mound in relief. The Indians didn't fare much better against him. Blake came in and struck out the side to seal the 10-1 victory for the Cruisers. 

The victory for the Cruisers clinches a berth into the 2019 West Central District 3 2A Baseball Tournament. This will be a double elimination tournament. 

Game one, held on Saturday, May 4, Eatonville faced off against the Steilacoom Sentinels at Loeb Field at the Kitsap County Fairgrounds

"I am very excited for the kids making districts," Moeller said. "A lot of young kids have really risen to the occasion and have grown so much throughout the year. We have a real team mentality and everyone is contributing in many different ways. It's been a lot of fun and we are excited for the challenge ahead of us in the district tournament. There are a lot of great teams in our district and to be in the mix with them is a huge accomplishment this year's group of players."

Summary

Eatonville vs. Renton 10-1 W - WP: A. Wiklund (6IP, 1R, 3H, 2BB, 12K) A. Wiklund 2-5, 2RBI / Z. Smith 2-4, 1R, 1RBI / J. Kondra 1-4, 1R, 2RBI / B. Hanley 1-3, 2R, 2RBI / B. Storm 1-2, 1R, 1RBI / J. Lucht 1-4, 1R / J. Humphrey 1-4, 2R