Century leads conference baseball all-stars
It was an historic year for the Century baseball team on the diamond, and now off of it, as the Jaguars claimed 10 positions and had eight different players selected for the Pacific Conference All-League team.
Century finished 23-6 overall, won a first round playoff game before losing in the second round to Central Catholic, and won a conference championship for the first time in 17 years. In the wake of the disappointing 3-2 loss to the Rams, the Jaguars' Micky Thompson was named the conference Pitcher of the Year.
The senior who'll be attending and playing baseball for Washington State University next fall, finished the season with a 7-1 record, 0.88 ERA, while striking out 93 and walking 20.
"Micky had a phenomenal season pitching for us this year," Century head coach Mason Wright said. "It's evidence that he works extremely hard on his craft and his numbers speak to that. I'm extremely proud of him and happy for him because all of the accolades he has received throughout his high school
career are much-deserved."
Thompson was also selected as a first team all-league outfielder, batting .333 with three home runs, 19 RBIs, and with a team-leading slugging percentage of .991.
Joining the senior on the first team was junior Ian Lawson who was selected as both a pitcher and first baseman. Lawson hit .337 with a .940 slugging, while going 6-1 with a 0.80 ERA, striking out 84 and walking 19.
In addition to Lawson, seniors Jared Gordon and Blake Baccay were first-teamers, while catcher Alex Garcia, shortstop Justyn Herzog, and third baseman Niko Rosell were selected to the second team. Also, Gordon was selected honorable mention as a pitcher.
"I'm extremely proud of all our players who were nominated for all League selections, and am extremely proud of Jared (Gordon)," Wright said. "Jared is the type of player who often times flies under the radar. He leads quietly by example and is the ultimate teammate, so for him to have such a memorable senior year is something he truly deserved to experience."
Not to be forgotten, Wright too was honored, selected as the conference Coach of the Year — something he said was more of a staff award, including all of his assistants.
"I chalk that accolade up to the entire staff," he said. "The group that works with our players is extremely dedicated and knowledgeable about the game. I feel that the award is a direct reflection of the entire staff and I couldn't be more proud to work with each and every one of our coaches."
The Jaguars weren't the only local team with honorees. Forest Grove and Liberty garnered five selections apiece, and Glencoe had three players honored.
Vikings juniors, pitcher Rhett Larson and catcher Max Richards were both first team selections, while seniors J.J. Buehler, Henry Tonges, and Ben Heisler were honorable mention.
Forest Grove head coach Justin Engeseth said both were very deserving.
"Couldn't be more deserving or proud of him (Richards) as he worked his craft all year," the coach said. "Offensively he was reliable, but not as consistent as he would want to be if you asked him. I look forward to his offseason efforts and his final year of high school."
Richards hit .299 with 11 RBIs while committing just four errors behind the plate.
"Larson was a workhorse for us and very deserving of his first team award," Engeseth said. "I know from him, despite receiving this award, he knows he still has work to do, as while it's deserving, he is not satisfied."
Larson finished with a 1.15 ERA, striking out 51 batters in 42 innings.
Liberty too had five honorees, including Jake Hoskins as a first team infielder and sophomore Ryan Miller as a second team outfielder.
"Jake stepped up in day one and showed how hard he was willling to work to achieve his goals," Liberty head coach Ryan Raagas said. "He became a respected leader among the team and set the tone for us every day. I think he's only scratched the surface of his potential, and now that he has a taste of this, he's set the table for a better season next year."
Three other Falcons were selected for honorable mention: senior outfielder Bryan Bafaro, junior catcher Tyler Bickford, and senior pitcher Ben Ineson.
Glencoe's Bryce Fornshell was the Crimson Tide's only first-teamer, earning honors at the shortstop position. Rounding-out Glencoe's honorees were senior pitcher Jacob Trasen and senior outfielder Joe Collins, who were honorable mention selections.
Sherwood senior Sage Dunaway was selected the conference Player of the Year.