The start of the prep baseball season, as with most of the spring sports, got off to a slow start with the weather. It’s only fitting, then, that the end would be impacted as well.
The torrential rains that have hit Eastern Washington the past few days have caused some adjustments to the schedules, but the regional round of state should begin across the state on Saturday with 11 area schools still alive to vie for a title.
The lone Greater Spokane League 4A team in the tournament is Central Valley (21-3), which travels to the Everett pod to face Federal Way (20-3) at 10 a.m. Olympia plays Skyline at 1 p.m. in the other Everett pod game, and the winners square off in a quarterfinal at 4.
Coach Jeremie Maupin’s team downed Gonzaga Prep 8-1 in the District 8 third-place game at Mead HS last week as Ryan Clay cleared the bases with a triple in the fourth inning and the Bears beat the Bullpups (13-11) 8-1. Freshman Parker Smith struck out four over six three-hit innings and Jaden Stough went 3 for 3 with an RBI for CV.
“We’ve kind of battled back. We’ve been down all year early and battled back and fought through things,” Maupin said. “These guys just never give up, and we pulled it out.”
Mt. Spokane carries the torch for the GSL in the 3A tourney. The Wildcats (21-2) face Timberline (11-10) in the Yakima County Stadium pod at 10 a.m. Lake Washington faces Kamiakin at 1 p.m. and the winners play at 4 p.m. in a quarterfinal.
The Wildcats dropped a 15-6 decision to Kamiakin in the District 8 championship game. Mt. Spokane bounced back to shut out Southridge 1-0 in the District 8 second-place game to earn a berth to state as Stu Flesland struck out five in a five-hitter and the Wildcats beat the visiting Suns (19-6).
“Stu wasn’t gonna let us lose, is really what it boils down to,” Mt. Spokane coach Alex Schuerman said. “You could see it in the in the clubhouse before the game, he was he was icy-focused.
“We would have liked to have six or seven runs and have a little cushion, but he just wasn’t gonna let them score.”
West Valley (10-7) came in third in the Great Northern League regular season. The Eagles beat fourth-seeded Clarkston 12-2 in the first round of the district tournament, then knocked off No. 2 Cheney 1-0 and top-seeded Pullman 5-1 to capture the district’s top seed to the 2A crossovers.
The Eagles then beat District 5’s East Valley (Yakima) 6-5 in eight innings to advance to state. Bryan Andrews went 2 for 4 and drove in a pair of runs and Louden Marsalis scored on an error in the bottom if the eighth as West Valley eliminated the Red Devils.
West Valley was assigned to the Auburn HS pod, where it will face Columbia River (18-5) at 10 a.m. The winner will take on the Sehome/Port Angeles winner at 4 p.m. in a quarterfinal.
Colville (16-2) tied Freeman for the regular-season title in the Northeast A, then topped the Scotties 8-1 in the district championship at Avista Stadium to punch its ticket to state. All-league pitcher John Knight tossed a three-hitter with 13 strikeouts.
The Indians face Zillah (16-4) at Larson Field in the Moses Lake pod at 1 p.m.
After losing the district title game, Spencer Curnow crushed a three-run home run and Freeman (13-4) beat District 6’s Okanogan 17-7 in a crossover last weekend to advance to state. Scotties junior pitcher Jace Phelan was the Northeast A League MVP this season.
Freeman plays Royal (16-4) in the other Moses Lake first-round game at 10 a.m.
Colfax (19-4) won the district title with an 8-6 win over Asotin. The Bulldogs face Tonasket (13-4) in a first-round game that originally was set for Ferris HS but was moved to Wenatchee HS at 2 p.m. due to soggy fields.
Northwest Christian (8-7) earned the third seed from District 7 with a 5-4 win over Chewelah in the third-place game. Gunner Kuehl went 3 for 3 with a home run and two RBIs as the Crusaders eliminated the Cougars. NWC plays Brewster (19-3) in the other Wenatchee pod game at 11 a.m.
Odessa, Almira/Coulee-Hartline and Colton all advanced out of District 7/9 play to the state tournament.
District champion ACH (19-1) takes on Evergreen Lutheran (13-3) at 10 a.m. at Borleske Stadium in Walla Walla. The winners game is at 4 p.m.
Second-place Colton (14-6) faces Quilcene (5-10) at 10 a.m. and third-seeded Odessa (16-2) plays Naselle (16-3) at 1 p.m. at WF West HS, with the winners playing a semifinal at 4.