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White River's Johnson, Enumclaw’s Larrea taking their talents to the collegiate level
Cole Johnson taking big bat to Washington State University
White River High standout Cole Johnson will pack his bags for Pullman and lend his baseball talents to Washington State University.
The versatile star of the Hornet baseball team signed a national letter-of-intent last week, committing to the Cougars.
Johnson put an end to any recruiting by signing early with the Pac-12 Conference Cougs. He won’t begin his senior season at White River until the spring season and won’t begin classes on the WSU campus until August.
Mike Williams, the veteran coach of the White River program, knows the Cougars are getting a good one.
“Cole is in the Top 10 in every imaginable offensive and defensive category, including pitching,” at White River, Williams wrote in an email. The coach added that Johnson is among the top batters in the South Puget Sound League 2A, hitting nearly .400 last season.
Williams will again park Johnson in the No. 3 spot in the Hornets’ batting order, a slot he reserves for the team’s best hitter. When he’s not taking the mound as White River’s top pitcher, the left-handed Johnson holds down first base.
The Cougs have recruited Johnson as an everyday player, rather than a pitcher.
Katie Larrea signs with Long Beach water polo program
Enumclaw High’s Katie Larrea has signed a national letter-of-intent to play water polo at Long Beach State in California.
EHS coach Bob Averill notes the Hornet program has had numerous players make their mark outside the program, but Larrea’s signing is the highest-profile development in the history of Enumclaw water polo.
Long Beach State plays at a level not seen in the state of Washington. The sport is much bigger in California and that is shown on the Long Beach State roster. Last year’s team of 23 included 20 from California.
Larrea has certainly built a legacy at Enumclaw High, where she had a breakout season as a junior. After seeing limited playing time her first two years, Larrea was a first-team all-league selection last year, an honor that was followed by being named a first-team all-state player and fourth-team all-American.
She helped the Hornets to a 24-2 record and third-place finish at last season’s state tournament.
She will play her senior season at EHS in the spring.
Larrea has competed in the USA Water Polo Junior Olympics the past two years with her club team, Pacific Northwest Shores, based at the King County Aquatic Center, and has also been a member of the USA Water Polo Olympic Development Program Pacific Northwest team for the past two years.