State: West, Juneau stay alive; winner plays Dimond
Posted by Van Williams, ALB Media Director | Jul 30, 2018
Game 13: Juneau 6, Dimond 0
Gabe Storie threw a 4-hit shutout and 2017 State MVP Zeb Storie went 3-for-4 and scored the game's first run as the Post 25 Midnight Suns beat previously tournament unbeaten Post 21 on Day 4 of the 66th ALB State Tournament at Mulcahy Stadium.
Gabe Storie had a pretty uneventful evening in terms facing few baserunners and not allowing any of them to reach farther than second base. In each of the second and third innings, the first two Dimond hitters reached base only for the rally to eventually evaporate.
He allowed only one hit over the final four frames and ended the fourth and sixth innings with a strikeout. He had five on the night.
Zeb Storie, the leadoff hitter, was the only batter on his team hitting fourth or better to get a base hit – and he got three of them. He’s now hitting a team-best .538 for the tournament.
He led off the game by working the count full and reaching on a single. He went to second on a passed ball, tagged on a flyball and then scored on another fly ball off the bat of Michael Cesar to give the Midnight Suns (26-2) their first run.
They tacked on two more runs in the second inning, thanks largely to Owen Mendoza's triple. He knocked in one run and then scored on Bryson Echiverri's RBI single to make it 3-0.
Juneau’s offense didn’t let up, adding single runs in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings to push the lead to 6-0.
The Midnight Suns are especially dialed in at the plate and everybody seems to be seeing the ball well. Nobody struck out against Dimond and opposing pitchers have only fanned seven Juneau batters in 124 plate appearances during the state tournament.
Dimond (24-8) didn’t look like the same team that ran the table through the first three days of the tournament.
Jack Dolan was in the middle of the action all night for the Lynx.
As a hitter, he went 2-for-3 effort to lift his batting average to .364 for the state tournament. As a pitcher, tossed 5.2 innings and held Juneau’s terrific trio of Donavin McCurley/Cesar/Kasey Watts hitless (0-for-8).
Zach Jenkins and Raythan Robbins also had base knocks for Dimond. Kobe Vanderwood drew a pair of walks.
The loss didn’t mean anything in terms of the Lynx had already clinched a spot in Tuesday’s state title game.
Juneau will play West Post 1 at 3:15 p.m., with the winner taking on Dimond at 6:15 p.m.
Dimond 000 000 0 - 0 4 2
Juneau 120 111 x - 6 7 0
Dimond - Dolan, Boyce (6) and Robbins. Juneau - G.Storie and Cesar. W - G.Storie. L - Dolan. 2B - None. 3B - Mendoza (J). HR - None.
Game 12: West 5, Kenai 2
Post 1 ace Leland Wilson struck out 11 batters over 5.2 innings to earn the win and closer Luis Nunez recorded the final four outs for the save as the Eagles move on and sent home the Post 20 Twins in the 66th ALB State Tournament at Mulcahy Stadium.
West (21-11) scored twice in the first and third innings to take an early 4-1 lead and then leaned on its pitching and defense do the rest, paving the way for the Eagles to advance to the final day of the state tournament for the first time since 1988.
Kenai jumped on Wilson with one out in the first inning with back-to-back singles that provided a 1-0 lead, but that was it. The smooth southpaw didn’t allow another hit the rest of the way.
Meanwhile, West’s Declan Dammeyer and Revy Maack both reached and scored in the first inning, with Thomas Zettler driving in one of those runs with an RBI single.
In the third inning, Mack got things started again after getting hit by a pitch and coming around to score on Wilson's RBI single. Wilson would later score on an error to make it 4-1.
Kenai’s patience at the plate resulted in a slew of walks over the fourth and fifth innings, helping the Twins plate a run. Trapper Thompson walked, moved to second on a balk, went to third on a groundout and scored on a passed ball to make it 4-2 in the fifth.
West answered with a manufactured fun its own in the sixth inning from Nicko Opinsky, who walked and sac bunted to second, moved to third on a base hit and scored on a passed ball.
Kenai starter Logan Smith pitched a 6-inning complete game, scattering seven hits and three walks. He pitched well enough to win on most days, but this was West’s day.
The Eagles saved their ace for Day 4 and it paid off as the team needed his terrific outing to eliminate a perennial powerhouse that has won 17 state tournament games and two state titles since 2012. The Twins are used to winning in the postseason.
West, on the other hand is not.
At least, that used to be the case. Last year was the first time the Eagles advanced to state since 2012. They finished sixth.
This year they can do no worse than third and are still alive to reach the championship game for the first time since 1988 or win the program’s first Legion state title since 1977.
Kenai 100 010 0 - 2 3 3
West 202 001 x - 5 7 0
Kenai - Smith and Boze. West - Wilson, Nunez (6) and Langnes. W - Wilson. L - Smith. S - Nunez. 2B - None. 3B - None. HR - None.