Hoping to bring home the first state baseball championship in school history, the Mountlake Terrace Hawks had to settle for the runner-up trophy after a tight loss to the defending 2A state champion.
The Hawks were defeated 2-1 by the Ellensburg Bulldogs on Saturday in the 2018 WIAA 2A State Baseball Tournament championship game played at Yakima County Stadium in Yakima.
Terrace had won six playoff games in a row heading into Saturday’s title tilt but couldn’t get past a Ellensburg squad that yielded just two runs in their final 27 innings of the state tournament.
Both teams were kept scoreless in the first five innings of Saturday’s contest before the Bulldogs came up with a pair of runs in the top of the sixth inning. Brady Helgeson reached first base on an error by the Hawks second baseman Layne Zuschin, then got to third when Tyler Polacek doubled to deep left field. Helgeson scored on a Kendall Yackley wild pitch, then Polacek was knocked in by a Jadon Bugni RBI-single to right field over a drawn-in Hawk infield.
Terrace mounted a last-inning comeback attempt in the bottom of the seventh, but got the potential tying run to third base and no further. Max Coleman begun the inning getting hit by a Helgeson pitch, then advanced to second base on a Dan Bingaman single to left field.
After Ryan Cacatian came in to pinch-run for Bingaman, both Coleman and Cacatian moved up a base on a Tyson Kim groundout. Jesse James Martineau next grounded out off of Bulldog reliever Davis Spenser, but picked up an RBI as Coleman scored from third base and Cacatian advanced to third base. But Zuschin wasn’t able to get anything off of Spenser, striking out to strand Cacatian at third and end the game.
Saturday’s championship win was the third for Ellensburg; the Bulldogs also won state titles in 2014 and 2017. Ellensburg also took home a third place in 2016, a fourth place in 1973, and has an overall record of 19-9 in state tournament games.
The Hawks end their 2018 campaign with an overall record of 20-9 and as the first Terrace team to advance to a state tournament final four, let alone a state championship game.
To view the entire WIAA 2A State Baseball Tournament bracket, click https://wiaa.com/ardisplay.aspx?ID=1753.
Prep Baseball: Ellensburg vs. Mountlake Terrace, May 26 (WIAA 2A State Baseball Tournament championship game)
Ellensburg 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 — 2 6 0
Terrace 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 — 1 3 1
Winning pitcher: Brady Helgeson (Ellenburg)
Losing pitcher: Kendall Yackley (Mountlake Terrace)
Records: Mountlake Terrace 20-9 overall; Ellensburg 22-4 overall
Mountlake Terrace next game: 2018 season completed
–By Doug Petrowski