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Five North Enders named to All-Kitsap baseball squad
The 2009 All-Kitsap County Baseball Team was compiled by the sports writers for the North Kitsap Herald, Port Orchard Independent, Bremerton Patriot and Central Kitsap Reporter. Candidates for the team were nominated by the writers for their respective areas. The nominees were then voted on by the writers, with the top vote-getters making the teams. Honorable mentions were also selected from each school. The team includes the best players from area schools who not only performed well individually, but played a role in the success of their team as well.
The following is the 2009 All-Kitsap County Baseball Team.
P — Casey Bohlmann, senior, Central Kitsap: The left-hander offered Cougars coach Bill Baxter a reliable arm to spell Vettleson. Bohlmann pitched 34 innings during the regular season, going 4-1 with a 3.09 ERA and 43 strikeouts to just eight walks. Bohlmann finished the regular season with a .358 batting average in the No. 6 spot.
P — Eric Eley, senior, Klahowya: The right-handed power pitcher logged a 1.97 ERA in a team-high 53 1/3 innings, striking out 58 batters to finish the season with a 6-3 record. Also one of the Eagles' most consistent hitters, Eley hit .396 with nine RBI and .604 slugging percentage.
P — Colin Feldtman, senior, Bainbridge: The Spartans rode Feldtman's arm to the Class 3A state championship game. Coach Jayson Gore said Feldtman pitched five consecutive complete games to end the season, emerging as the team's undisputed ace. His 1.21 ERA was a team-best. He also hit .421 with 16 RBI.
P — Kurtis Pitcher, senior, Klahowya: Aptly named, the left-handed Pitcher delivered each time the Eagles needed a big performance. He threw a one-hitter with 15 strikeouts against Port Angeles in late April and delivered a gritty performance in the Eagles' season-ending loss to W.F. West in the state tournament. Pitcher, who will play next year at Western Oregon University, finished with a 2.33 ERA, striking out a team-best 63 batters to just 20 walks.
P — Tyler Sullivan, senior, Kingston: Sullivan, who will play at the University of Washington next year, terrorized opposing teams from both the mound and the batter's box this season. As a pitcher, Sullivan threw 53 strikeouts in 33 innings, and gave up an average of 1.7 runs per game. On the offensive side, Sullivan hit .460, including two home runs, in 15 regular season games.
C — Curtis Wildung, sophomore, Kingston: Wildung led the Buccaneers with 22 RBI this season, putting up one of the best batting averages in the Olympic League at .511 in 15 regular season games.
1B — Danny Orr, junior, Kingston: Orr racked up 25 hits in 15 regular season games on his way to a .490 batting average. Along the way, he drove in 13 runs and knocked a pair of homers over the fence.
2B — Nate Roberts, senior, Central Kitsap: Slated to play second base next season at Seattle University, Roberts anchored the CK infield, seeing significant action at shortstop. The right-handed Roberts batted No. 3 in the Cougars' lineup, hitting .383 with four home runs and 20 RBI.
SS — Brady Steiger, senior, South Kitsap: Rated as the 13th-best player in Washington’s 2009 class by Baseball Northwest, Steiger wasn’t challenged often as the Wolves’ No. 3 hitter. He had a team-best 10 walks during the regular season and also had a .435 batting average and had team-bests in home runs (five) and RBI (19). He committed to play at Washington State University in March 2008, where he likely will return to third base, the position he played in 2008 for the Wolves.
3B — Will Martin, senior, Bainbridge: Martin finished the regular season with a .500 batting average in 50 plate appearances, hitting three home runs to go with a team-high 21 RBI.
OF — Drew Vettleson, junior, Central Kitsap: Recently named the 2009 Gatorade Player of the Year, the ambidextrous Vettleson, who has verbally committed to Oregon State University, hit .382 with four home runs and 18 RBI during the regular season from the left side of the plate. On the mound, where he used his right arm, he logged a 1.70 ERA with 40 strikeouts in 25 innings, going 2-0 during the regular season.
OF — Blake Johnson, junior, Olympic: Johnson posted .455 batting average and scored a team-best 29 runs to go with 12 RBI. Primarily a center fielder, he stole 16 bases while putting up a .709 slugging percentage.
OF — Andy Smith, senior, North Kitsap: Smith, who will play outfield for the University of Washington next year, put up huge numbers on offense and defense this season. As a batter, Smith led the Vikings, hitting .483 with 23 RBI and two homers. On the mound, Smith was undefeated in the regular season and hurled 53 strikeouts in 46 innings, allowing an average of 1.51 runs per game.
UTIL — Rickey Johnson, junior, South Kitsap: Johnson filled the role as the Wolves' most versatile athlete this year. He regularly played first and third base when he wasn't serving as one of South Kitsap's top pitchers. Johnson had a .463 batting average during the regular season and also had a team best .635 on-base percentage. He also hit two home runs, tied for a team best with 10 RBI and led the Wolves with nine stolen bases. On the mound, the right-handed Johnson had a 3-1 record with a 2.44 ERA and had 19 strikeouts in the same number of innings.
UTIL — Chris Campbell, sophomore, Olympic: Capable of playing almost any position on the field, Campbell led the Trojans with .475 batting average and 22 RBI. He was second on the team in both runs and total bases with 19 and 35, respectively.
DH — Rueben Smith, senior, Kingston: Smith was an asset for the Bucs all season despite a shoulder injury that kept him from playing the field. In 16 regular season games, Smith averaged .364 at the plate, drove in 13 RBI and blasted three home runs.
Coach of the Year — Jayson Gore, Bainbridge: The 10th-year coach led the Spartans to the Class 3A state championship game at Safeco Field where they lost to O'Dea, 10-3. Along the way, however, Bainbridge upset then-No. 1-ranked Timberline in the semifinals, one of five games the team played against a state-ranked No. 1 team. The Spartans, who graduate 13 seniors, didn't lose a regular season Metro League contest by more than three runs. The team finished 19-8 overall one of the state's most competitive baseball leagues.
Honorable Mentions (alphabetical by last name)
Jeremy Aske, North Kitsap; Paul Bagala, Kingston; Nick Benish, North Kitsap; Daniel Jewett, North Kitsap; Kyle Murray, Kingston; and Alex Smith, North Kitsap.