Significant injuries, an extended school year, an almost entirely new roster, and the usual brutal game-after-game summer schedule. A list of obstacles have piled up, but, so far, nothing has slowed a young Lakeside Senior Legion baseball team.
“It’s a really good team,” center fielder Spencer Rogers said. “We’ve got off to a good start with the bats, so hopefully we’ll keep it up throughout the summer.”
Lakeside, which features a mix of players from Issaquah, Skyline and Newport high schools, improved to 9-1 on Tuesday night with a 15-5 victory over Shoreline Legion.
The team is currently without two of its top pitchers, Adrian Sampson (Skyline) and Blake Fulghum (Skyline). Starting shortstop Ryan Somers (Skyline) has missed all but one game with an injury, and leadoff hitter Trace Tam Sing (Newport) has also dealt with shoulder problems.
“We’re battling with injuries big time right now,” head coach Rob Reese said.
There are 12 new players on the 2009 team, and only six returners.
Newport senior Kevon Zadeh is one of the new players on this year’s team.
“I think its fun to get to know these guys,” he said. “It’s great, seeing them as rivals, and now jumping in and playing with them as teammates. It’s all the best teams in KingCo joined together to do something great.”
In addition to getting used to a new set of teammates, the seven Newport players on the roster have dealt with an extended school year because of the Bellevue School District strike earlier in the year.
“Right now we’re battling school and finals,” Reese said.
Despite the difficulties, Reese likes where his team is headed.
“They know each other, most of them have played together before,” he said, noting it normally takes about a month before things start to click. “They kind of look forward to it. It’s definitely a different intensity to where you leave off in high school to where you start the summer.”
Lakeside is getting set to begin a stretch of seven games in four days, including doubleheaders Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Reese said he will likely have to pitch infielders due to all the injuries. While the schedule can be brutal, it’s something the players are prepared for.
“Its pretty crazy,” Zadeh said. “You have to make sure you take care of your body and come ready to play everyday.”
Rogers agreed, noting there are times where it would be nice to just hang out and relax, but all the players are out there for a reason.
“Everyone out here loves baseball, so it’s a good time …,” he said.
This year’s roster includes seven players from Skyline: Adrian Sampson, Shawn Ellis, Blake Fulghum, Peyton Harrod, Jared Lemke, Sean Penberthy and Ryan Somers. There are four players from Issaquah: Devin O’Donnell, Spencer Rogers, Matt Houser and Shane Yarnell. Newport has seven players on the roster: Jared Fisher, Colin Hering, Victor King, Trace Tam Sing, Andrew West, Cole Wiper and Kevon Zadeh.
Lakeside bats crack Shoreline
Lakeside battled from behind twice Tuesday night to beat Shoreline, 15-5 at Bannerwood Park.
Lakeside led 3-0 after the first inning, but Shoreline battled back for a 4-3 lead in the second inning. After Lakeside knotted the game up 4-4 in the fourth, Shoreline grabbed a 5-4 advantage in the top of the fifth. The second lead was short-lived, however.
Lakeside’s bats erupted over the next two innings, scoring four runs in the bottom of the fifth and seven in the bottom of the sixth.
Three different players had two-run triples, including Rogers, Zadeh and Harrod. Eight of the nine hitters in the starting lineup had RBI hits. Rogers was 2-for-2 with three RBI, three walks, and three runs scored. Zadeh was 2-for-4 with three RBI.
Jared Lemke earned the win, and Wiper earned the save, holding Shoreline scoreless over the last two innings. Lakeside’s next home game is at 5 p.m., Friday against the Valley Thunder. For a complete schedule go to www.lakesidebaseballclub.com.
Note: Adrian Sampson will miss the entire summer season. According to Reese, he will have to undergo Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. No one is sure when he injured his arm. “The doctor told him he should have felt a snap but he never did,” Reese said. “So, it just kind of gradually frayed and went down.”