A quartet of area baseball players will head east of the Cascades this weekend for the all-state series of games.
First nominated and then chosen for the elite contest were White River’s Dustin France, Sumner High’s Joey Muscarnera and Bonney Lake’s Grant Townsend and Taylor Graham.
The all-state games will be played June 13-14 at Parker Field in Yakima. Players from all divisions are divided into four teams for the two-day series.
France – who will play for Team St. Helens – hit .333 (20-for-60) during his senior season. He scored 19 runs, knocked in a dozen, had an on-base percentage of .446 and a slugging percentage of .383.
Once on the basepaths, France was hugely effective, stealing 13 bases in 14 attempts. Defensively, he fielded at a .959 clip, guilty of just two errors.
Primarily and outfielder, France was needed on the mound and responded by pitching the second-most innings on the Hornet staff. He posted a 5-1 record and built an impressive ratio of 47 strikeouts to 15 walks on the way to a 1.71 earned-run average.
Muscarnera – who will be playing for Team Adams – compiled some impressive mound statistics, finishing his senior campaign with an 8-2 record. Along the way, he posted a miniscule earned-run average of 0.98. He struck out 96 batters while walking 27 and yielding 30 hits.
Townsend – who will play for Team Rainier – went 6-0 as a senior hurler, posting a tiny ERA of 0.80.
The Panther ace fanned 70 batters, walked 18 and gave up 16 hits and five earned runs.
He was a force at the plate as well, hitting .339 (21-for-62). He drive in 26 runs and smacked five home runs, tying for the Panther team lead in each category.
Graham – also on the Team Rainier roster – hit at a .386 clip for his senior season, going 22-for-57. He scored 25 runs, tying for the team lead, and had 10 extra-base hits. He had a team-high .649 slugging percentage.
Defensively, the outfielder committed just one error during the season.
Players from all four area high schools played June 2 in a South Puget Sound League all-star doubleheader at Auburn Mountainview High School.
The twilight twin-bill – with a 2A roster taking on a club of 3A players – served as a feeder game for the all-state series. The 3A group won both contests, 4-1 and 15-1.
Area players competing in the feeder games were:
White River: France, Mitchell Webster, Trent Buchanan and Mason Harris.
Enumclaw: Tyler St. John, Cooper Wicks and Meyers Hammond.
Bonney Lake: Townsend, Riley Miller, Graham and Kyle Jones.
Sumner: Johnny Staley, Muscarnera and Chase Torgison.
White River’s Mike Williams was part of the 2A coaching staff and Sumner’s Casey Adcox was on the 3A coaching roster.