Payton Andreas’s Electric Start Gives Selah CWAC Championship
For the fifth straight year, Selah and Ellensburg matched up in the CWAC Championship.
Behind the electric start of junior Payton Andreas, Selah picked up a clean 3-0 victory to clinch the district title.
Andreas turned in one of the finest starts of his career. He registered six innings pitched, while allowing just one hit.
Selah's pitching coach Rob Archer was not shocked by his starter's phenomenal performance.
"I wasn't surprised at all, that's why he got the start today," coach Archer said. "We knew he had it in him, he's been up and down, but he was quality today and really focused."
It's worth nothing this performance came against the highest scoring offense in the CWAC. Ellensburg came into this contest averaging over 10 runs per game.
Selah would struggle early at the plate however.
Ellensburg starting pitcher Tyler Polacek was on fire, tossing a one-hitter of his own through the first five innings.
With the game deadlocked at 0-0, Selah's Chase Ergeson led off the sixth inning with a deep fly ball to right center field. It rolled all the way to the wall in right field.
Ergeson was able to leg out a triple after a bobble by the right fielder.
The following at-bat, right fielder Sam Skeen drove in Ergeson with a scorching ground ball that found a hole in left field.
The rally would continue with Carter Young, who dropped a bunt single, moving Skeen over to second base.
Knowing the chances of another rally was slim, Selah Coach Mike Archer made the decision to call a gutsy double-steal.
Ellensburg catcher Jadon Bugni overthrew his third baseman on the steal attempt, allowing Skeen to round third and score.
An RBI single by clean-up hitter Carter Chapman would score Young from second base, and Selah found themselves up 3-0 with just one inning left.
"You get down to those last couple innings, and you're running out of time," Skeen said. "We had our backs against the wall, and it's tradition here at Selah, that's when we play best."
Junior Dylan Bishop came in for the save opportunity. He would fan three Ellensburg batters to close the combined one-hitter.
With this win, Selah will enter the state tournament as the #1 seed. This is a fact that left coach Archer feeling optimistic.
"It's going to be huge with the draws," said coach Archer. "Seeding wise, we're going to get better match-ups to start with."
Selah will travel to Ephrata or Spokane next Saturday to play in the regional section of the state tournament.