Glacier Peak’s Mason Divinney delivers a pitch against Kamiak Friday, April 15, 2022, at Kamiak High School in Mukilteo, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Glacier Peak’s Mason Divinney delivers a pitch against Kamiak Friday, April 15, 2022, at Kamiak High School in Mukilteo, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Glacier Peak tops Kamiak in Wesco 4A rubber match

The Grizzlies earn a key win, 8-4, in the third game of the week between the two teams.

MUKILTEO — With just four teams competing in Wesco 4A this season, the Glacier Peak High School baseball team knew the rubber match of its three-game series with Kamiak held the utmost importance.

A 2-1 start to a nine-game league schedule could be a major difference-maker in a competitive league that Grizzlies coach Bob Blair said “anybody can beat anybody on any given day” in.

GP rose to the occasion and set itself up in a position to vault itself into the driver’s seat next week.

The Grizzlies busted out for four runs in the third inning, Mason Divinney pitched six strong innings on the mound and GP held on to beat Kamiak 8-4 on a crisp Friday afternoon at Kamiak High School.

“It’s a huge win,” Divinney said. “We started off hot and got a little cold, but that’s baseball. It happens sometimes. We just kept the fight going the entire game. I know my guys will always keep the fight going.”

Ashton Olson and Karsten Sweum worked back-to-back walks to lead off the top of third and Colby Holmdahl bounced a single up the middle to give GP (10-4, 2-1 Wesco 4A) a 3-1 lead. Caleb Johnson plated two more with a single into right-center and Jacob Erickson made it 6-1 when he legged out an infield single to push Johnson across with two outs.

“It makes it so much easier,” Divinney said of pitching with the early run support. “When your guys get you a few runs you feel like you’re already pitching with a win. You’re a lot more at ease throughout the game.”

But the Knights (9-3, 1-2) fought back with a rally of their own.

Sanha Oh lined an RBI single into right-center in the bottom of the third. Will Kunz made it 6-4 in the fourth when he ripped a two-run double down the left-field line.

“They’re a good team and they score runs,” Blair said of Kamiak. “In all three games we played against them, they hit the ball.”

Holmdahl answered back in the top of the sixth with an RBI single and made it all the way to third on an error by the right fielder. He later scored on a wild pitch for an 8-4 lead.

Kamiak made things interesting in its final turn at the plate.

Kunz walked and Oh was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second with no outs. Jack Fenton ripped a hard line drive on a 3-o pitch but it found the center fielder’s glove just in front of the wall.

Another walk loaded the bases, but Grizzlies reliever Jacob Ryiter escaped the jam unscathed with back-to-back strikeouts to seal the victory.

“After playing a team for the third time in a row over four days, it gets a little tense,” Blair said. “You see people and you know what people are doing. It really just comes down to playing ball and taking care of business.”

Divinney allowed four runs, one earned, on six hits and two walks while striking out six to earn the win on the mound.

Holmdahl reached base three times, scored twice and drove in two runs during a 2-for-3 day at the plate. Johnson was 1-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored, Logan Hall scored a run and went 2-for-4 and Bodie Stevenson had an RBI.

The Grizzlies got solid production from the bottom part of their lineup. Johnson, Hall and Erickson combined to go 4-for-12 with three runs scored and three RBI.

“It’s big,” Blair said. “We’re not hitting home runs, but we’ve got guys that can put the ball in play up and down the lineup, one through nine. That puts pressure on the other team not to rest on their heels, and they’ve gotta play defense every inning.”

Kunz went 2-for-3 with two RBI, a run scored and a walk, Oh was 1-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored and Cayden Wotipka had an RBI and walk during a 1-for-3 outing for the Knights.

Tim Cook threw 2.1 scoreless innings, including escaping a bases-loaded jam in the third, to keep Kamiak in it before the Grizzlies were able to get to him for two runs in the sixth. He went 3.1 innings in total and allowed only one earned run while striking out two.

GP squares off with perennial league-title contender Jackson in a three-game series next week. Both team are currently tied for first in Wesco 4A.

“The key to that series is we gotta be swinging and we can’t be striking out,” Holmdahl said. “We gotta play perfect. We gotta play clean. We can’t be making mental mistakes or physical mistakes or anything like that. We’ve gotta play perfect if we want a chance to beat them.”

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