Calvin Turchin kept waiting and watching. The ball kept rolling and rolling fair down the third base line, but somehow not foul.
That quirky play loaded the bases for the Woodinville High School baseball team in the top of the fourth inning. Turchin struck out the next batter for the second out, but then Chris Wilson blooped a single that hit off Federal Way shortstop Tyler Praven’s glove and landed between he and left fielder Dawson Bakker.
The 3-2 lead was enough to end Federal Way’s season against Woodinville in the first round of the 4A state tournament on Sunday at Heidelberg Park in Tacoma.
"A couple of bounces here and there and we might be in the quarterfinals or semifinals," Federal Way senior second baseman Ben Koler said.
The Eagles (20-5) had the tying run on base each of the next three innings.
Koler led off the bottom of the seventh with a single to center field for his second hit of the game. Closer Drew Barlow then struck out Christian Jones, who doubled and scored a run earlier in the game, before hitting Eddie Peraza.
Gabe Togia flew out to right field and Dawson Bakker grounded into a fielder’s choice to end the game.
"It was the right guys up, man," first-year Federal Way coach Arlo Evasick said. "That’s all you can ask for. It was in the hands of the right people at the right time, (Woodinville) just beat us today."
Evasick said he’d take a loss like that over what he experienced in his own high school days playing at Chimacum, when his team’s season ended on a dropped fly ball to the second baseman in the state tournament.
"It’s better to be beat by a team than having something like that," he said.
"High school baseball – it’s different than anything you’ll ever do," Evasick said. "Game of inches, man. One ball that doesn’t roll foul is followed by another that drops between two guys. That’s why it’s a great game. Sometimes it goes your way and sometimes it doesn’t and sometimes it’s the difference in the game. The difference today were a couple of balls that didn’t go our way."
Woodinville led 1-0 after Nolan McCafferty came around to score on a sacrifice bunt in the first inning.
But Federal Way rallied to take the lead when Koler singled with two outs in the bottom of the third, which was followed by Jones’ double to right field and Peraza’s two-RBI double to left.
Woodinville starting pitcher Bryce Coyne allowed just the two runs in six innings, striking out seven.
"He’s a good pitcher," said Jones, a University of Washington signee. "Going into the game we knew he had good offspeed. We just tried to stick with it and the first couple of innings he kind of caught us by surprise.
"We always feel like we’re going to win every game. No matter how late in the game it is. Today we just ran out a little bit."
Kennewick 4, Bonney Lake 3 (8 innings): The Panthers finally broke the scoreless tie with three runs in the top of the seventh inning and needed three outs to seal a trip to the state quarterfinals.
But Kennewick answered back then walked off on Rea’s RBI single in the bottom of the eighth inning to end Bonney Lake’s season in the first round of the 3A state tournament on Sunday at Curtis High School.
Zac Horne, the 3A SPSL MVP, pitched seven innings for the Panthers, striking out seven. One of the three runs he allowed was earned.
Matthew Gretler was 1 for 3 with a double and a run scored and Robby Pogue was 2 for 4.
Lake Washington 9, Enumclaw 2: Austin Hood him a home run for the Hornets to lead off the fifth inning.
But by that time the Kangaroos had pushed their lead to seven runs and went on from there to end Enumclaw’s season in the first round of the 4A state tournament.
The Hornets season ended, but it was their first state appearance since 2011 and came despite finishing fourth in the 3A SPSL standings.
TJ Cotterill: 253-597-8677