Whitko took advantage of every extra opportunity Wawasee gave them. The Wildcats used the extra sauce to dump the Warriors, 11-1,
A pair of two-out errors in the second inning left the door wide open, the second allowing Whitko to take a 2-0 lead. The biggest blast then came from A Garr, who ripped a bases-loaded double to the left field corner, pushing the lead to 5-0.
Three more errors by Wawasee in the third allowed three more runs to score, Whitko now sitting on an 8-0 lead. And with an All-State pitcher like Ellie Snep standing in the circle, that was more than enough.
Snep was electric as usual, firing a one-hitter with seven strikeouts. The only run Wawasee generated was on the one hit, a homer to right in the fifth by Bethany Flannery. The win for Whitko gives them back-to-back Wawasee Invite titles, and a lot of momentum heading into a busy upcoming month.
“We’ve been very good at capitalizing on other team’s mistakes, and we certainly were fortunate today,” said Whitko head coach Michele Garr, whose club is 7-1. “We are not perfect by any stretch, we make mistakes, too. Here lately, we have been good about capitalizing. With a young team like we have, it’s been hot and cold sometimes. Today they just did a really good job and I’m proud of them getting the title.”
Wawasee, which lost a pair of tight Northern Lakes Conference games the past two nights, reached the final after a 9-4 win over South Bend Clay in the opening matchup. Flannery had a homer against the Colonials while Delaney Hare and Danielle Jenkins each had two hits and two runs scored. Ava Rush added three RBIs.
“Defensively, I really feel like this team is going to be on a learning curve throughout the whole year,” said Wawasee head coach Mike Barger. “Consistency has been a problem for us. We are making strides, but we can’t put it all together at the same time. Game one, we hit the ball. Game two, nothing except Flannery’s homer. And then we have a bunch of errors in the field, and when you have a team like (Whitko) with a pitcher like Snep, they will make you pay. Against the good teams, we are finding out that mistakes can’t happen.”
Whitko reached the championship game by blowing out Three Rivers Conference rival Rochester, 12-2. Snep had three hits and Madison Smith had three RBIs to lead the charge for the Wildcats, which had every player collect at least one hit, part of an 18-hit parade.
Wawasee (3-6) will host Northridge Monday in NLC play.
Wawasee split its two games at its Wawasee Baseball Invite, losing to Lowell, 16-5, then rallying to salvage 13-3 getback in the consolation game against Heritage.
Wawasee spotted Lowell a three-run lead right out of the gate in the first inning, which became a 6-0 deficit after Lowell’s half of the third. Wawasee got two back in the third on back-to-back hits from Carter Woody and Jacob Hand, but the Red Devils answered back with a vengeance with 10 runs in the fourth, scoring all 10 runs without committing an out.
Kameron Salazar punched a two-run single in the fifth for the Warriors, which hurt its cause by leaving eight runners on base, three in scoring position in the first two innings.
Heritage and Wawasee played to a 2-2 game through three innings of the consolation, the Patriots taking the lead at 3-2 on a sacrifice fly by Frank. Wawasee tied the game on a Parker Young RBI single in the bottom half of the fourth, and took the lead for good on a Tony Garcia groundout. Young added a two-run single in the fifth, Jairus Boyer ripped a two-run single and Jacob Carson, Salazar and Garcia all had RBI singles in a seven-run fifth.
Garcia got the win against Heritage, working four innings and allowing two earned runs on five hits with four strikeouts.
“Pitching-wise, all of these games in a short amount of time will take a toll, but we have a lot of guys who can pitch,” said Wawasee head coach Brent Doty. “Guys have shown that they can be successful. We don’t have guys that are going to hit it out of the park a lot, we have guys who are going to just hit the baseball, move runners around the bases, and make teams earn every out they are going to get on us. Cutting down some of our mistakes in the field will only help us moving forward.”
Lowell continued to swing the hot bat in game two, beating Elkhart Central 10-8 to win the Invite title.
Wawasee (4-4) will visit Northridge Monday in NLC play.
With a young and impressionable roster, Wawasee head coach Shane Staley was hoping the Wawasee Tennis Invite would be a chance for his team to get a tournament feel ahead of the bigger conference and sectional gauntlets. Mission accomplished.
The Lady Warriors went to the wire with Southwood in the championship match, splitting the first four courts before Southwood claimed the deciding two doubles court for a 3-2 championship over Wawasee.
Wawasee earned its two wins over Southwood at No. 2 and No. 3 singles, with Elizabeth Kleopfer picking up a two and love win while Kaitlin Graber got a rare varsity start and make it work in a one and two win. Southwood responded with a win at No. 1, Drue Gentry holding on for a 7-5, 6-1 win over Kendra Doerr and its No. 1 doubles team of Emily Gwillim and Kyrstin Gouveia going 7-5, 7-5 against Courtney Larson and Brianna Haessig. That left No. 2 doubles, where Brittany Jackson and Molly Jones won the first set 6-3 for Wawasee, only for Courtney Andrick and Haleigh Snyder to come back for a 6-2 second set. In the tiebreaker, the Southwood duo put the tourney in their hands with a 10-5 finale.
“Molly and Brittany worked together for two of the duals today and do have some experience together at the JV level,” Staley said, noting the absence of senior Kabrea Rostochak from No. 1 doubles. Rostochak is on a Super Mileage field trip with the school. “Their chemistry helped them today. Brianna and Courtney don’t have a lot of experience together, but they won their matches today. We don’t have a lot of experience at doubles, and it’s something we have to continue to work on.”
Wawasee would sweep round one against Prairie Heights, losing just 12 games in the process, and beat sectional foe Columbia City 4-1, the Eagles able to win the No. 3 singles matchup.
Southwood beat Columbia City 3-2 and Prairie Heights 5-0 in the first two rounds. City salvaged a win with a 5-0 run on Heights in the other third round matchup.
Wawasee (3-2) will take Monday off before playing four matches in four days, beginning Tuesday at home against Northridge.
Wawasee claimed a champion at the Turtletown Classic.
Jada Parzygnot continued to show she is one of the top pole vaulters in the area by clearing 9-0 to win the title.
Kenzie Smith added a second top-three for the Lady Warriors, running 2:32.80 to place third in the 800 run. The 4×800 relay team of Smith, Bailey Mayhew, Nadia Palacios and Emma Ebright were fourth at 10:44, Mayhew added a pair of fifth-places in pole vault (7-6) and the 400 (1:03.92) and Aiyana Perales was fifth in the 100 (17.74).
Sara Pritchard was fourth in discus (103-1) and sixth in shot (31-3).
Wawasee placed eighth in the Gold Division, reserved for the larger schools, with 41 points. East Noble won the Gold Division with 131 points, Columbia City second at 99.33. Westview won the Black Division, reserved for the smaller schools, with 121 points to Central Noble’s 118 points.
Wawasee gets back to work Tuesday at Warsaw against the Tigers and NorthWood.
Wawasee had a trio of individuals step forward at the prestigious Goshen Relays.
Brothers Isaiah and Elisha Tipping were beasts in throws, Isaiah winning shot put over his brother on established throws. Isaiah reached 45-03.5 first, only for Elisha to later hit the exact same mark. Neither were able to top the distance, and neither could anyone else, leaving Isaiah the champion and Elisha second. Elisha would take second in discus at 137-0, only behind Angola’s Aaron Petrancosta’s 143-01.
Luke Griner gave the Warriors a second championship, taking the win in the 800 at 4:30.11, only to have Trinity (Greenlawn)’s Frank Rossi on his heels at 4:30.36.
Wawasee and Whitko tied for fourth in the team scoring with 62 points, helped greatly by the throwing finishes. NorthWood retained the Class B title, holding on for a 90-89.25 win over Angola. Fort Wayne Carroll repeated as Class A champions.
Wawasee will prep for Wednesday’s home dual with the champions – NorthWood – in Wawasee’s final home appearance of the season.
Wawasee placed fifth among nine teams at the Whitko Golf Invite at Sycamore Golf Club in North Manchester.
Evan Dippon and Dillon Drake both fired 92s to pace the Warriors while Tyler Bosshik posted a 94 in his first varsity start. Luke Weisser carded a 102 and Aiden Jonsson came in at 104 for Wawasee,
Wawasee as a team shot a 380, good for fifth ahead of the host Wildcats at 386 and Northern Lakes Conference rivals Northridge at 387. Triton won the tournament with a 335, comfortably ahead of Fairfield’s runner-up 347.
Wawasee will host Fairfield, Elkhart Central and West Noble at South Shore on Monday.