YAKIMA – Michael Coumont had come to Yakima seven times with Freeman High School teammates in search of state championships in basketball and baseball. Three times he’d been on the losing end of state title games in basketball.
There was no way, he told himself Saturday afternoon, that was happening one more time.
Coumont put on a brilliant display of pitching to contact for the Scotties (24-3) as they knocked off defending champion King’s Way Christian 6-2 to win the State 1A baseball championship at County Stadium.
The win was cathartic for the young men on the team and for a boisterous supporting community still struggling in the aftermath of the Sept. 13, 2017, school shooting that left one classmate dead.
Coumont got all the help a pitcher could ask for from his defense. The Scotties turned double plays in the first two innings, including a showy 5-4-3 rally killer in the second. But the biggest play came in the bottom of the sixth when Desmond Parisotto threw a strike to catcher Konner Freudlander for the third out after Hunter Aarhus singled in Damon Casetta-Stubbs with King’s Way’s second run.
“I have the utmost faith in my defense,” Coumont said. “I have trusted them all year and I knew I wasn’t going to be a strikeout pitcher in the state finals. I had to pitch to contact and they had my back.”
Coumont got into trouble in the fifth, allowing a run on two walks and a single. He gave up another run in the sixth before ultimately leaving the game with none out in the seventh when he reached the WIAA-mandated pitch limit.
Parisotto – the Scotties’ winning pitcher on Friday night – had a single and two doubles and scored twice.
“What a storybook deal for these kids,” Freeman coach Chad Ripke said. “I’m so proud of them. …. I’m proud to call them my kids and I’m proud to be their coach.”
W.F. West pitcher Tyson Guerrero was one walk away from a perfect game, striking out 12 West Valley (16-10) batters en route to a 12-0 victory in the third-place game.