Issaquah Eagles junior pitcher Jared Jongejan unveiled a complete-game gem on the hill against the Eastlake Wolves baseball team.
Jongejan, who pitched all seven innings, surrendered just seven hits and allowed no runs in Issaquah’s 2-0 victory against the Eastlake Wolves on April 24 at Issaquah High School. The Eagles (14-3 overall) have won 11 straight games since losing to Bothell on March 29. Eastlake dropped to 9-8 overall with the loss. In the top of the sixth inning and top of the seventh, the Wolves had two runners on base but on each occasion Jongejan was able to entice Eastlake batters to ground out into inning ending double plays. Issaquah head coach Rob Reese was thrilled to see Jongejan be efficient on the mound.
“Getting a complete game is huge. He did great and he finished at right around 75 pitches. It was just amazing,” Reese said of Jongejan’s performance. “He is a strike thrower and they were just an aggressive team. We got some quick innings. He was getting ahead and throwing strikes.”
Issaquah got on the board in the bottom of the fourth. Eagles’ senior Drew Feldman doubled off the left field wall, scoring Justin Buckner from second base to give Issaquah a 1-0 lead. Later in the inning Kyle Rodriguez singled, scoring Feldman which extended Issaquah’s lead to 2-0. Eastlake starting pitcher Michael Hansell allowed just five hits in 5 2/3 innings of work.
“Michael pitched a hell of a game. He kept us in it,” Wolves head coach Frank Smith said.
Smith thought his team played well but didn’t get the breaks in a matchup against the top squad in the KingCo 4A Conference. The Wolves out-hit the Eagles 7-5 but still came up short.
“Baseball can be a cruel game. We out-hit them but we just needed to put two hits together. They [Issaquah] got a guy on second [Buckner) and they got a big blast [Feldman] into the gap there. This is why they are in first place. They find ways to get their guys home. That is a really good team,” Smith said.
Reese said Eastlake made solid contact with the ball the entire game but was impressed with Jongejan’s gritty performance in the final two innings to seal the win.
“You got to give them credit. They just put the ball in play and found some holes. That can happen sometimes but then he [Jongejan] clutched up and got the two ground balls at the end. It was awesome,” Reese said.
The Eagles are back at the top of the KingCo Conference after being in the middle of the pack the past few seasons. Reese believes his team’s experience has played a pivotal factor in the team’s improvement this season. Issaquah has 14 seniors on the varsity roster.
“We’ve had a lot of seniors who have been through it the last couple of years. You develop them and when they get to be seniors this is what happens,” Reese said. “It is a lot of fun.”