Cruisers exit playoffs with tough 3-1 loss to Olympic

After finishing 3rd in the SPSL 2A Sound Division, the Cruisers captured the #5 seed to the West Central III District playoffs with a 10-9 victory over  3rd place Franklin Pierce from the Mountain Division on May 1. Zach Smith went 4-4 with a homerun and triple in that game.

The Cruisers then travelled to Bremerton on Saturday, May 5th to take on #7 seed Steilacoom at the Kitsap County Fairgrounds field in the first round of the WCD III playoffs. The Cruisers were no real match for the Sentinels as they dropped that game 8-1. That loss would put them down into the losers bracket of the double elimination tournament.

On May 9, Eatonville traveled back to take on the Olympic Trojans in a loser-out contest under the lights. Olympics pitcher Keaton Dean was a real match for the Cruisers. He went the full 7 innings for the Trojans only giving up one run on four hits. The Cruisers would fall 3-1 to end their season. Eatonville’s Zach Smith would muster 2 of Eatonville’s  4 hits in the game and drive in the Cruisers lone run. Eatonville Coach

“He was a tough pitcher," head coach Mike Moeller said of Dean. "He has been one of their top pitchers this year and their number one starter. He did a good job mixing up fastballs and curveballs to keep us off balance. They are a senior heavy team with a lot of experience and well coached. They started seven seniors last night and the experience showed."

The Cruisers finished the season with an 11-10-1 record and finished in third place in their division. They will be returning a number of their starters next season. Their big ace on the mound, junior Andrew Wiklund will be back next season to once again anchor the pitching staff. Sophomore shortstop Zach Smith will also be back to help lead the Cruisers at the plate as well as shoring up the middle infield for Eatonville.

“We came into the year with only one returning varsity player from the 2017 team, so I am really happy with how this year’s team progressed," Moeller said. "We really were playing our best baseball at the end of the year, and with a couple of different breaks going our way, could have had a shot to move on. I am excited about the players we have returning and am confident they will be ready to step up and fill the needs in 2019."

They will miss the great play of their wonderful graduating seniors. Ryan Bailey, David Garroutte, Wade Wikander, Braden Henricksen, and Justin Mann have all meant a lot to the program over the last few years and will be sorely missed.

“We will miss the contribution the seniors made for sure, but overall we were a young team that improved immensely throughout the year" Moeller said. "


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