Juanita scored one run in the top of the sixth inning and held on for a 1-0 victory over Redmond in a 3A KingCo baseball playoff game on Tuesday night.
Taylor Peterson scored on a wild pitch to send Juanita (7-8) into a matchup with Mercer Island (12-2) at 7 p.m. Thursday at Bannerwood Park. Redmond (8-7) is finished for the season.
JD Worcester earned the win for Juanita with 10 strikeouts. Connor Barison took the loss for Redmond and had nine strikeouts. Both pitchers gave up just two hits each.
Jayson Schroeder and Christian Blackburn had hits for Juanita, and Cameron Allenshipman and Alex Astorga had hits for Redmond.
Juanita coach Brian Shannon feels that while his team has performed well this season, the Rebels dealt with a rough stretch of games without key players in the lineup.
The Rebels are now back on track.
“We have gotten back to playing better recently, JD Worcester did a tremendous job putting the team on his back last night and we’ve got a resilient group of kids who have performed well this year with the game on the line,” said Shannon, who believes 3A KingCo is the toughest league in the state and the Rebels will have to play high-level ball to keep rolling in the playoffs.
Juanita’s pitchers will need to continue attacking opposing hitters and they’ll be looking to the middle of the batting order to produce in big spots.
“As we saw last night, a few plays can determine the outcome when you have two great pitchers on the mound and that is why we have stressed the importance of base running and taking pride in doing the little things correctly,” Shannon said.
Lake Washington (9-5) will play Bellevue (12-2) at 4 p.m. Thursday at Bannerwood.