They threw it harder.
They hit it farther.
They picked it up cleaner.
Now it's time to honor the best of the best in Three Rivers League baseball.
Lakeridge saw players honored at nine spots this season, that group led by first-teamers Cam Clayton and Cooper Justice. Lake Oswego, meanwhile, saw six players recognized, led by first-team selections Matt Sebolsky, Gabe DeVille and Alex Giroux.
For the Pacers, Justice — a junior pitcher — was honored for his work on the mound, throwing 50 innings and allowing only 28 hits while striking out 58, walking just 10 and posting a 0.98 earned run average.
"Cooper has an uncanny ability to command the baseball. (It's) very unusual for a high school pitcher to be able to pitch effectively with his fastball to both sides of the plate," said Lakeridge coach D.J. Whittemore. "He was … a huge reason the team improved as much as it did from last season."
Clayton — a sophomore shortstop — won his way onto the first team by batting .427, racking up an on-base percentage of .513 and finishing with 10 doubles and just six strikeouts in 113 trips to the plate.
He may have been even better defensively, fielding .948 (best in the league among starting shortstops) with 78 assists and just six errors in 30 games, while also turning 14 double plays.
"Cam was at his best against the best pitchers in the biggest spots. He showed good power with a rare ability to define the strike zone and defend the entire strike zone late in the count," Whittemore said. "Cam could easily have been the Player of the Year in the conference and has solidified himself as one of the top 2021 grads in the state."
Also honored for Lakeridge were: junior Spencer Santana, second team as an outfielder and honorable mention as a pitcher; senior second baseman Hayden Moore, second team; junior John Taylor, second team as a pitcher and honorable mention as an infielder; junior designated hitter Brian Hamlin, second team; and senior catcher Trent Allen, honorable mention.
That group led a Pacer resurgence that saw the team reach the state quarterfinals for the first time in more than a decade, finish fourth in the TRL race and post a 20-10 overall record after going 4-22 a year earlier.
For the Lakers, Sebolsky — a senior center fielder and the team's leadoff hitter — earned his berth on the first team by batting .371 with 11 RBIs, 25 runs scored, nine doubles, three triples and six stolen bases. He also played an error-free league season, using his speed to track down balls across the outfield.
DeVille — a senior catcher — batted .419 this year with 16 RBIs, 14 runs scored, one homer, two triples and eight doubles. He also fielded at a .987 clip at catcher.
Giroux — a senior first baseman and pitcher — did it with his arm and his bat this year. He hit .427 with 24 RBIs, 17 runs scored, one triple, five doubles and eight steals. As a pitcher, he went just 5-5, but had a 2.84 ERA with 47 strikeouts and 24 walks in 39.2 innings pitched.
"All three guys are some of the hardest-working kids in the program and lead by example," said Lake Oswego coach Jake Anders, who noted that all three were three-year starters who had previously won all-league honors, with Giroux named Pitcher of the Year in 2017. "They all put time in the offseason regardless of other sports. These are some of the cornerstones of our program."
Also honored for LO were: junior first baseman Alex Sol, second team; and junior outfielder Thomas Dukart, honorable mention.
As a group, the Lakers went 11-7 in TRL play to place third, put together a 10-3 mark down the stretch to finish 15-14 overall, then bowed out in the second round of the state playoffs.
Three Rivers League All-Stars
First Team: Outfielders — Matthew Sebolsky*, Lake Oswego, sr.; Fletcher Ahl*, Tigard, sr.; Cormac Duffy*, West Linn, sr.; Michael Montoya, Oregon City, sr. Infielders — Cayden Delozier*, Canby, jr.; Kyle Dernedde*, Tualatin, sr.; Jonathan Kelly*, West Linn, sr.; Cam Clayton, Lakeridge, so.; Ethan Clark, Tigard, jr.; Lance Kreisberg, Tigard, sr. Pitchers — C.J. Rivers*, Tigard, sr.; Jonathan Kelly*, West Linn, sr.; Cooper Justice, Lakeridge, jr.; Cameron Atkinson, Tualatin, sr. Catchers — Gabe Deville*, Lake Oswego, sr.; J.J. Hoover*, West Linn, sr. Designated Hitter — Cameron Laroche, Tigard, sr. First Baseman — C.J. Rivers, Tigard, sr.; Utility Player — Alex Giroux, Lake Oswego, sr.
Player of the Year — C.J. Rivers, Tigard
Pitcher of the Year — Jonathon Kelly, West Linn
Coach of the Year — Joe Monahan, West Linn
Manager of the Year — Tyler Winkle, Oregon City
Second Team: Outfielders — Spencer Santana, Lakeridge, jr.; Garrett Wiancko, West Linn, sr.; Josh Schleichardt, Tigard, so.; Griffin Biggs, Tualatin, fr. Infielders — T.D. Davison, Oregon City, so.; Hayden Moore, Lakeridge, sr.; Matt Kurtin, West Linn, sr.; Jackson Laurent, Lake Oswego, sr. Pitchers — Lance Kreisberg, Tigard, sr.; Caleb Franzen, West Linn, sr.; Sean Wiese, Canby, sr.; John Taylor, Lakeridge, jr. Catcher — Ashton Stalheim, Oregon City, jr. Designated Hitter — Brian Hamlin, Lakeridge, jr.; Zach Bell, West Linn, sr. First Baseman — Alex Sol, Lake Oswego, jr.
Honorable Mention: Outfielder — Thomas Dukart, Lake Oswego, jr. Infielders — John Taylor, Lakeridge, jr.; Jordan Weseman, Oregon City, jr.; Mike McNamee, Tigard, jr.; Chase Bartley, West Linn, sr. Pitchers — Spencer Santana, Lakeridge, jr.; Sam Gerkman, Tigard, sr.; Kyle Sullivan, West Linn, so.; Gabe Johnson, West Linn, sr. Catchers — Trent Allen, Lakeridge, jr.; Blake Jackson, Tualatin, jr. First Baseman — Cam Springer, Tualatin, sr.
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