Federal Way set to defend title

With a pair of wins last Saturday, the Federal Way baseball team made it back to Cheney Stadium for the final round of the state tournament that starts this week.

The Eagles will play Richland at 7 p.m. on Friday. The winner advances to the state championship game at 7 p.m. Saturday, also at Cheney Stadium.

The defending state champion Eagles beat Auburn 10-3 in the first game of the day Saturday at Kent Memorial Park, then shut out Kamiak 5-0 in the nightcap to earn the right to go for a second consecutive title.

“It’s a blast. It’s just as exciting as it was last year,” said Federal Way senior first baseman Travis Ishikawa. “At the beginning of the season we set it as a goal to get back to Cheney. Now that we’re there, it’s unbelievable.”

“It seemed like it took a long time to get here, but I’m glad we’re here,” said Federal Way senior Shea McFeely, who pitched his team to a win against Auburn.

In that first game, McFeely responded after a rough start to get the job done both on the mound and at the plate. He threw 10 strikeouts and didn’t walk a batter. He also went 3 for 3 with a single, a double and a solo home run.

McFeely started shaky and trailed 3-0 after just three Auburn batters. Sophomore K.C. Herren smacked a three-run homer to give the Trojans a lead.

But McFeely wasn’t rattled and struck out the next three batters to retire the side. He didn’t allow another run the rest of the game.

Federal Way came back with two runs in the bottom of the first inning, then tied the game with a run in the second inning when Brett Davis’ RBI double scored Donny Farris.

Federal Way took the lead with three runs in the third inning: McFeely doubled, Kenny Yun singled and Brandon Goff followed with an RBI single. Two outs later, Davis knocked a two-RBI single as Federal Way built a 6-3 lead.

“The key to the game was our approach,” Fiedler said. “We came out in the bottom half of the first inning and it felt like a 0-0 game.”

Davis was 2 for 3 with a double and 3 RBI. Yun was 3 for 3 with 2 RBI and 2 runs scored.

In the second game of the night, Federal Way survived a bases-loaded scare to beat Kamiak 5-0.

It was a scoreless game in the top of the fifth inning when Kamiak loaded the bases with no outs on three straight singles, including two bunts. Yun struck out the next two batters, then forced a groundout to Davis at third base, who slightly bobbled the ball before making the throw to first base to end the inning.

“When we shut them down with the bases loaded, I knew we had it,” Ishikawa said.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Federal Way offense finally got moving to score five runs on three hits and two errors. Kamiak’s pitcher had thrown 50 pitches through the first five innings, but ended up throwing 32 of them in the sixth inning alone.

“Federal Way is a good club,” said Kamiak coach Steve Merkley. “They got us when they needed to. That’s what state champions do, I guess.”

Andre Piper-Jordan started off the inning with a single, then went to second base on a throwing error. Ishikawa put down a sacrifice bunt that moved Piper-Jordan to third base. Washington followed with an RBI single to left field that scored Piper-Jordan. After pinch runner Mitchell Harrison stole second base, McFeely was intentionally walked. That brought up Yun, who hit an RBI single to right field that scored Harrison. Courtesy runner Chris Herndon came in to run for the pitcher Yun and stole second base. Goff was intentionally walked. One out later, Farris reached base and earned an RBI when he hit a sharp chopper to the shortstop, who couldn’t handle the ball. Piper-Jordan came up to bat again in the inning and earned a bases-loaded walk that scored Goff. Ishikawa popped out to end the inning.

Yun struck out five, allowed four hits and didn’t walk anybody to earn the win and improve to 6-1 on the season.

It was a solid comeback for Yun after giving up four runs in one inning of relief last weekend’s game.

“I was a baby last week, but not today,” Yun said. “I was nervous for seven innings. They had great bunts, but I just did my job.”

“I had no doubt he would respond in a big way,” Fiedler said. “He’s got great ability. He said to me, ‘I’m not going to be a baby today.’ He played like a man.”

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