Excellence on the baseball diamond has been the norm for the Puyallup Vikings and Sumner Spartans throughout the 2014 season.
The Spartans, who have a record of 17-1, clinched the South Puget Sound League 2A regular season championship with a 6-2 victory against the White River Hornets on April 30 in Sumner.
The Vikings, with a record of 17-0, clinched the SPSL South 4A regular season title with a 4-2 victory against the Beamer Titans on April 25.
Puyallup and Sumner high schools, which are just 4 miles apart, have baseball programs that have the talent and ability to hoist a state championship trophy May 31 in Eastern Washington. The Class 4A championship game is in the Tri-Cities and the Class 2A championship game is in Yakima.
The road to winning a state championship is a tough trek, but I wouldn’t be surprised if both teams traveled across Snoqualmie Pass on Interstate 90 with the hardware they’re striving to earn.
One of the benefits to locking up a league title in April is it allows the pitching staffs to rest and be primed for the playoff run. The Vikings and Spartans will be refreshed and recharged when the post-season arrives.
Sumner starting pitchers Logan Christensen and Christian Parsons are a dominant 1-2 punch that rivals any team in the Class 2A Division. The Vikings star-studded roster is led by starting pitchers Luke Heimlich and Lane Griffin. Having adept pitchers combined with timely hitting is the key to success in the playoffs at any level.
The 2001 Arizona Diamondbacks relied heavily on starting pitchers Randy Johnston and Curt Schilling. The duo were the co-MVPs of the World Series and were the catalysts behind the Diamondbacks 2001 World Series title. They dominated on the mound and clutch hits by the offense propelled them to the top.
That scene played out earlier this season for the Vikings against the Graham-Kapowsin Eagles. The score was tied 0-0 until Zach Needham jacked a solo home run to win it in the bottom of the seventh. Heimlich kept his team in the game on the hill, tossing a complete-game one-hitter.
May is going to be an exciting one for Vikings and Spartans fans. Everything will be on the line as the Vikings and Spartans strive for state titles.
Shaun Scott: 253-552-7002 firstname.lastname@example.org