Prep baseball: North Thurston 1 win from regionals

todd.milles@thenewstribune.comMay 14, 2014 

To say Riley Storedahl was a tad worried about his playing status would be an understatement.

Last week, his stomach ached. He had no reason why. Some around the North Thurston High School baseball team feared he had appendicitis.

But the Rams senior recovered from a nagging stomach ailment in time for their winner-moves-on, loser-goes-home Class 3A West Central/Southwest bidistrict game Tuesday at Heidelberg Field in Tacoma.

Backed by four first-inning runs, Storedahl gave North Thurston five-plus strong innings, and the Rams held off Enumclaw, 6-4.

North Thurston (16-5), the 3A Narrows League regular-season champion, will travel to take on 3A Greater St. Helens League champion Columbia River (18-2) on Wednesday for a berth into the regional tournament.

“You get into this game right here … anybody from the SPSL 3A would be tough,” North Thurston coach Lance Baker. “To bounce back like this … after we lost a little bit of momentum (in the 3A Narrows tournament) showed their resiliency.”

Enumclaw picked an awful time to have its worst inning of the year in the first inning. Three errors led to four unearned runs for the Rams.

“As horrible of an inning we’ve played all year long,” Enumclaw coach Eric Fiedler said.

And after Ryan Mets’ single to center field brought in Hunter Nielsen for the team’s sixth run — and a 6-0 lead — in the fourth inning, it appeared the Hornets had enough to worry about just playing a full game and not be done in by the WIAA “mercy rule.”

But it took one of the weirdest plays ever on a baseball field to give Enumclaw new life.

The Hornets’ Shayne Sanborn reached on an error to start the fifth inning. But in the next at-bat, Storedahl got Cooper Wicks to ground right to the shortstop for an easy double play.

But the umpires huddled and determined that the grounder hit the infield umpire, and it was declared dead. Wicks was awarded first base, and the Rams’ double play was erased.

Eventually Enumclaw scored three times in the inning.

Baker summoned Mets to relieve a tiring Storedahl with two outs in the sixth inning. Mets got a strikeout, then struck out the side in the final inning for the save to end Enumclaw’s season.

“I felt great. I got a little bit tired, but I felt great,” said Storedahl, who lost 10 pounds since last Thursday. “My stuff was moving great today. I was a little inconsistent, but couldn’t do anything about that.”

CLASS 4A

Auburn Riverside 3, Kentwood 2: Joey Galeno’s ninth-inning single gave the Ravens the lead and teammate Brian Darby extended it to 3-1 as Riverside defeated the Conquerors in the West Central-Southwest bidistrict tournamen.

With the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth, the Conks’ Shane McGuire lined a single to left that brought in Andrew Ebner, but a strong throw from Noah Freelund nailed Austin Owens at the plate to end the game at 3-2. Auburn Riverside (11-10) plays Tahoma Wednesday, 7 p.m., at Art Wright Field in Kent while Kentwood’s (14-6) season comes to an end.

Central Kitsap 6, Federal Way 4: Riley Paschal’s home run started a three-run third inning that put the Narrows Cougars (10-12) on top for good as Central Kitsap defeated the South Puget Sound League Eagles (10-8) in the nightcap at Heritage Field in Puyallup. The Cougars will play Union, who lost to Todd Beamer, Wednesday at 4 p.m. on the same field.

Olympia 3, Graham-Kapowsin 1: Tyler Wambold went 2-for-3 with two RBIs as the Bears (10-12) stayed alive. Olympia will face Kentridge at 4 p.m. Wednesday at Kent’s Art Wright Field in a loser-out game.

CLASS 2A

At Tumwater 3, Capital 2 (11): Justin Brascher hit an RBI single in the 11th inning, Garrett Terrell was dominant through three innings of work, and the Thunderbirds opened the 2A District IV baseball tournament by beating the Cougars.

The Thunderbirds (18-3) got four hits and two RBIs from Ian Sugrue and three hits from Terrell.

Tumwater, champion of the 2A Evergreen Conference, advances to play W.F. West in Wednesday’s 4 p.m. semifinal in Chehalis.

Todd Milles: 253-597-8442 todd.milles@thenewstribune.com @ManyHatsMilles Staff writers Meg Wochnick and Kevin Manning contributed to this report.

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