Camas and Mountain View baseball appreciate league titles as teams head to postseason
The Camas Papermakers have earned the right for the easiest path from the 4A Greater St. Helens League to the state baseball playoffs.
Not that it is going to be easy. It’s baseball, after all.
Just that the Papermakers, by finishing first in one of the toughest leagues in the state, have put themselves in the best position.
The Class 4A bi-district baseball tournament starts Saturday (weather permitting). If Camas wins that game, it will be assured of a trip to state. A loss would put Camas in the consolation side of the bracket and would have to win two in a row from there to get to state.
Battle Ground and Skyview, meanwhile, the second- and third-place teams from the 4A GSHL, have to win three in a row to make it to state.
High school spring sports postseason begins this weekend in the team sports of baseball and boys soccer. Softball will start its playoffs next week.
Here is a quick look at what to expect.
“When you have top-level pitching you feel confident going into any game that you’ll be able to compete with anybody,” Camas coach Stephen Short said, crediting his team’s arms for the 2022 league title.
Ethan Hubbell anchored the staff, striking out 50 in 39 innings. He went 4-1 with a 0.36 ERA.
Max Fraser (61 Ks in 32 IP), Ryan McClaskey (44 Ks in 22 IP), and Boston Jensen (25 Ks in 19 IP) also shined from the mound.
On offense and defense, Short has been impressed with Drew Hancock.
“The guy has been unbelievable at third,” Short said. “Offensively, he’s been one of our top hitters all season. He’s a tremendous leader for us, both on and off the field.”
Camas is ranked fifth in the state in terms of the WIAA’s RPI. While that is only a tool to be used for seeding purposes, it should be noted that Battle Ground and Skyview are in the top 11 in the state, as well.
“It’s a tough league to win. Even if there are only four teams in it, every year there are four good teams,” Short said. “We’re proud to be the champ in a really tough league.”
Class 4A bi-district baseball tournament (Please look at the schedule tab for times, places for each game):
Mountain View gets the easiest path with its 3A Greater St. Helens League title.
A title that surprised … the Mountain View Thunder.
The team was without two of its three best pitchers all year due to injury. The coaching staff figured it would be fighting for a top-three finish. Instead, the Thunder are No. 1.
Aaron Coiteux has been the Mountain View coach for 15 years now.
“I feel it’s one of our best jobs of coaching and the best of the kids playing for one another,” he said. “I think it’s very special. The kids … really appreciate what they’ve accomplished.”
Jaden Rippelmeyer has led the team, going 7-1 with a 1.70 ERA and 63 strikeouts in 49 innings. He also has a .333 batting average and has driven in 14 runs in 19 games.
Coiteux was also thrilled with Davis Wolfley, Ethan Ring, and Joe Wilcox for their innings from the mound. They weren’t expected to throw too much for the Thunder this year. But with those injuries, they had to step up … and they did just that.
On offense, Jacob Martin is hitting .300 and he also has 28 stolen bases.
Mountain View will take on Silas on Saturday at Union High School, weathering permitting. The Thunder will advance to state with a victory. If not, they will have to win an elimination game in order to get another chance to go to state. Prairie, the third-place team from the 3A GSHL, must win two elimination games in order to play for a chance to go to state.
Class 3A bi-district tournament (Please look at the schedule tab for times, places for each game):
Class 2A and 1A
Columbia River (2A GSHL champion) and Class 1A baseball district tournaments begin next week.
In boys soccer, Union (Class 4A GSHL), Mountain View (3A GSHL), Columbia River (2A GSHL), and Seton Catholic (Trico League) are the league champions. Bi-district and district tournaments start Saturday.