And in the ninth inning, the Tomahawks found a way to turn a nail-biter into a knockout, batting around for five runs in an eventual 7-2 Western Conference 3A victory over the host Hawks.
"You want your guys to have perseverance, and I thought we showed that today," Marysville Pilchuck coach Kurt Koshelnik said. "When your backs are against the wall … if you just continue to plug away, by golly, good things will happen.
"It's good to come from behind," he added. "Mountlake Terrace is a good team, so it was good for our guys to be in that position. Going into the playoffs in a month or so, we're going to need games like this."
The Tomahawks had plenty of heroes this day, but none stood taller than starting pitcher Cody Anderson, a lanky left-hander. Despite giving up nine hits and three walks in the first six innings, he kept his team close until the Marysville Pilchuck offense finally got untracked.
Trailing 2-0 after five innings, the Tomahawks pushed across one run in the sixth and then got the tying run with two outs in the seventh on an infield error, the second of two in the inning for Mountlake Terrace.
As the game went to extra innings, and with his pitch count climbing, Anderson pleaded with Koshelnik to stay in the game. Even in the bottom of the ninth, and with the Tomahawks by then leading by five runs, "I was begging Coach K to let me go back in," Anderson said. "But he wouldn't let me do it."
"I had to pry the ball out of his hand," Koshelnik said with a smile. "And I had to tell him, 'That's the end of the conversation.'"
Anderson retired the last eight hitters he faced. Four of those were strikeouts, pushing his total for the game to 10.
Marysville Pilchuck broke the game open in the ninth with five runs on three hits (including two for extra bases), two walks and a Mountlake Terrace error. All five runs scored with two outs, including the last three on a bases-loaded double by first baseman Andrew Alvis to straightaway center field.
Reliever Parker House pitched the ninth and retired three straight batters as the Tomahawks improved their Wesco record to 6-0.
Despite falling behind early in the game, "we all stayed cool and calm under pressure," said Anderson, who plans to play next season at Bellevue College. "And then when it came down to the late innings, it wasn't just one big hit, it was everybody chipping in. … It was frustrating (early), but we didn't check out. We were all into the game and our intensity was there."
For Mountlake Terrace, the loss was a heartbreaker. The Hawks were one out from victory, but then had the game go to extra innings before it slipped away altogether.
"We have a lot of work to do," Hawks coach Andrew Watters said. "But as I just got done telling the kids, we've had an opportunity to win every game we've played. We're 4-5 (overall), and it's in our power to play better and to get better. … We're capable of competing with everybody in Wesco. I think the kids know that, and they know we just need to play better."
There was one terrific moment for the Hawks in the top of the fourth. With two runners on and no outs, they turned a triple play by getting outs at second and first on an infield grounder, and then catching a runner too far off the base at third for the final out.
At Mountlake Terrace H.S.
Marysville Pilchuck 000 001 105 — 7 10 0
Mountlake Terrace 010 010 000 — 2 9 4
Cody Anderson, Parker House (9) and Ben Northrop; Daniel Theis, Dominic DeMiero (7), Ben Reijonen (9) and Wyatt Allemann. WP—Anderson. LP—DeMiero. 2B—Nic Anderson (MP), Andrew Alvis (2B), Braydon Hopstad (MP), Drew Serres (MT). 3B—Jake Luton (MP). Records—Marysville Pilchuck is 6-0 in league, 6-1 overall. Mountlake Terrace is 3-3 in league, 4-5 overall.
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