LAKE STEVENS — Lake Stevens starting pitcher Branden Kelliher struck out 11 batters over eight innings and the Vikings took advantage of a Royals’ error in the bottom of the eighth to beat Lynnwood 2-1 on Saturday in the first round of the 4A District 1 Tournament.
Kelliher allowed just three hits and kept the Royals offense in check despite not having command of his curveball.
“It was mostly fastballs,” Lake Stevens head coach Rodger Anderson said of Kelliher. “He had a little trouble with his curve, but he was on with the fastball.”
The Vikings loaded the bases in the eighth and the game-ending run scored after Lynnwood’s first baseman fielded a groundball and then overthrew Royals catcher Brady Girgus trying to force out the runner at home.
The miscue spoiled a solid start from Lynnwood’s Lucas Jungmann. Jungmann also threw a complete game and although the Vikings had runners in scoring position in all but two innings, the junior was able to wriggle out of trouble.
“He mixed it up really well and kept us off balance,” Anderson said. “He did a great job of getting out of some jams.”
Lynnwood opened the scoring in the second on Girgus’ RBI single. The Vikings tied it in the sixth when Joey Palmieri doubled in Corey Bullens.
The Vikings advance to play Edmonds-Woodway in a winner-to-state game at Everett Memorial Stadium. The Royals face a loser-out game on the road against Arlington. Both contests are scheduled for Monday at 4 p.m.
At Lake Stevens H.S.
Lynnwood 010 000 00 — 1 3 1
Lake Stevens 000 001 01 — 2 9 0
Lucas Jungmann and Brady Girgus. Branden Kelliher and Matt Del Fante. WP—Kelliher (5-1). LP—Jungmann (3-4). 2B—Justin Brown (LS), Joey Palmieri (LS). Records—Lynnwood 13-7 overall. Lake Stevens 14-7.