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Kang baseball team finishes second in state in heartbreaking loss
The Lake Washington High School baseball team was a juggernaut heading into the state title game on Saturday. The Kangs used the mercy rule like it was something to toy around with, eliminating the first two teams they played during the state tournament with it and then narrowly missing a 10-run win in the elimination of Tumwater during the state semifinals.
But the state tournament is where the best teams play and the Kangs dominance came to an end Saturday at County Stadium in Yakima with a heartbreaking 2-1 loss to Ellensburg.
Lake Washington took the early lead on a John Lyon RBI double during the first inning. Things looked to be going the Kangs' way as Jake Masters cruised through the first three innings of shutout baseball. But one two-out pitch turned the game back toward Ellensburg, as a two-run home run off the bat of starting pitcher Junior Ledgard during the fourth inning gave the Bulldogs a narrow lead they would never relinquish.
Ledgard closed out the contest for a complete-game four hitter.
The Kangs advanced to the state title game thanks to a 10-1 victory against Tumwater Friday.
The state semifinal game was all Kangs, as Lyon, the team's starting pitcher, threw a complete game two-hitter earning eight strikeouts along the way and walking just one batter.
Lake Washington struck first with a run during its first at-bat. The team added one more run during the third and extended the lead to 6-0 by the middle of the fourth inning. Tumwater would score its only run of the game during the bottom of the fourth.
The Kang bats continued to bash the baseball, scoring two more runs during the fifth and sixth innings.
Offensively it was a team effort for Lake Washington as the team collected 11 hits. Karsen Rogers, Jordan LaFave and Lyon each collected two RBI, while Kevin Nakahara knocked in one run as well. Three of Lake Washington's runs were scored off Tumwater errors.