BREMERTON — Amber Bumbalough only needed one run to win her fastpitch match for Klahowya April 25, but as it turned out, she had 12 to work with.
Just two days after Bumbalough fanned a career-high 16 hitters against Sequim, she racked up another impressive outing on the mound. The senior pitcher recorded 15 strikeouts against Bremerton, going the full seven innings without allowing a run.
This included striking out the side in the first and third inning; getting two in the second, fourth, fifth and seventh; and one more in the sixth. Her performance was more than enough cushion to give Klahowya the 12-0 victory.
“Total control,” head coach Jodie Gagnon said after the game. “That’s how Amber plays the game.”
At the dish, Bumbalough finished a single away from the cycle. She unloaded for a two-run home run in the first inning to give her team the lead. Then, she walked in the third, tripled in the fifth and doubled in the seventh. Her only out was a hard line drive to right field in the fourth that was caught.
The Eagles consistently scored runs throughout the ballgame. After Bumbalough’s blast in the first, Klahowya tacked on four in the third, two in the fourth, one in the fifth and three in the seventh. Payton Urrutia started the contest for Bremerton but struggled early, walking six hitters in two innings of work.
“We had timely hits,” Gagnon said. “We scored when we needed to, but we let way too many strikes go by … we need to clean that up going into the playoffs.”
Urrutia came back out for the third inning. However, the Eagles’ first seven batters reached base, prompting head coach Darrell Clauson to pull her from the game. Mia Falotico replaced the starter to halt the damage. While she allowed six runs, Falotica didn’t allow a walk and struck out eight in five innings of work.
It didn’t matter who was pitching for the Knights, though, since Klahowya was stealing bases all day long. The Eagles swiped a total of eight on the way to their blowout victory — and that wasn’t even a season-high, Gagnon said.
“We push them until they throw us out,” she said. “We’re going to push the envelope all the time. That’s just the way I coach and that’s the way they play.”
As for the Knights hitters, success at the plate was rare, though a couple of players were able to break through against Bumbalough’s high velocity.
Falotico and Kaylee Bullard not only made contact in their combined seven at-bats, but they went 6-for-7 with a double and five singles. Though they strung together plenty of hits, they were stranded on base in every instance.
Falotico and Bullard singled with one out in the first and third innings, but Bumbalough’s heat helped her come away unscathed. Knights leadoff hitter Precious Stowers looped a fastball into a single in the bottom of the seventh, but by then it was too little, too late.
“I felt like my velocity was definitely there,” Bumbalough said, “and it’s been nice throwing in the heat.”
Klahowya has an away game at Quilcene on April 27 before returning for five consecutive home games that begin with a 4 p.m. league date April 30 against Coupeville.
“We beat Sequim — we hadn’t beat them in over 10 years — so that was really big for us,” Gagnon said. “We’re rolling with confidence right now.”
Klahowya 12, Bremerton 0
WP: Bumbalough LP: Urrutia
Klahowya 2 0 4 2 1 0 3 — 12 12 3
Bremerton 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 — 0 7 3
Klahowya — Bumbalough 7 IP, 7 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 15 K.
Bremerton — Urrutia 2 IP, 2 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 6 BB, 1 K; Falotico 5 IP, 10 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 0 BB, 8 K.
Klahowya — Bumbalough 3-4, HR, 3B, 2B, BB, 4 RBI, SB, 3 R; Eberhard 2-5, RBI, 3 SB, 3 R; Hough 3-4, 2B, HBP, 4 RBI, 2 SB.
Bremerton — Falotico 3-4; Bullard 3-3, 2B.
— Jacob Moore is a reporter for Kitsap Daily News. Contact him at Jmoor@soundpublishing.com or follow him on Twitter @JMooreKDN.