Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior battery Lamar Blatnick (catcher) and Landon Simonson (pitcher) bump fists on the mound with teammates as they begin their final home game at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior battery Lamar Blatnick (catcher) and Landon Simonson (pitcher) bump fists on the mound with teammates as they begin their final home game at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Crimson Bears honor seniors with Saturday diamond sweep over Falcons

JDHS’ Blatnick, Simonson pitch complete game wins against TMHS.

The Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé Crimson Bears baseball team honored their seniors with a Saturday sweep of crosstown rival Thunder Mountain at Adair-Kennedy Field, winning the first of the twin bill 3-0 and taking the nightcap 8-5.

“Firstly I would like to thank my dad first of all and then my coaches that have helped me get to this level,” JDHS senior Landon Simonson said of the sweep and his career. “I appreciate everyone that has helped me.”

Simonson and classmate Lamar Blatnick went the distance on the mound in the Saturday doubleheader. Blatnick allowed four hits, walked three batters and struck out three in the opener and Simonson allowed 11 hits and five runs and struck out five in the second game.

“Juneau baseball has meant a lot,” Simonson said. “It has helped me grow a lot. Everyone that I have met has been helpful. The wins feel great today.”

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé sophomore Riley Fick connects on a pitch against Thunder Mountain during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé sophomore Riley Fick connects on a pitch against Thunder Mountain during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Blatnick said he felt, “Amazing. My four years have been great. I have more opportunities to play baseball in college because of my coaches and my dad, they have helped me get through it. I am thankful for that.”

In game one JDHS scored in the third inning as Blatnick led off with a double, advanced on a ground out by sophomore Nate Fick and scored when freshman Hunter Carte reached on an error. JDHS added their final two runs in the bottom of the fourth as freshman Drew Cadigan McAdoo walked and scored on a one-out single by classmate Noah Lewis and Blatnick hit a two-out double scoring Lewis.

Blatnick led with three hits, Lewis and junior Jacob Katasse one apiece; Blatnick, Lewis and McAdoo scored one run each; Blatnick and Lewis had one RBI apiece; Blatnick, Lewis, Katasse, McAdoo and Simonson had one walk each.

TMHS senior Liam Hart went 3.1 innings, allowed three hits and the three runs, walked four and struck out two. Owen Woodruff released for 2.2 innings, allowed two hits, walked one and struck out one. Kasen Ludeman, Marcus Mendoza, Anthony Andersen and Woodruff had one hit each.

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé freshman Noah Lewis slides safely past Thunder Mountain High School second baseman Madden Mendoza (22) during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé freshman Noah Lewis slides safely past Thunder Mountain High School second baseman Madden Mendoza (22) during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

The Crimson Bears honored Simonson, Blatnick and classmate Maika Piakula between games.

“It has meant a lot,” Piakula said of the season. “Just one big family that competes with pride.”

In game two TMHS scored a run in the top of the first inning as Ludeman doubled in Mendoza. JDHS tied the score in the bottom half as Blatnick singled, stole second, advanced to third on a N. Fick sacrifice and stole home.

TMHS scored three runs in the second inning as Mendoza doubled in Haydon Aube and Ludeman singled, scoring Aube and Mendoza. JDHS took the lead in the bottom half with six runs as Riley Fick scored on an error, Blatnick grounded out scoring Lewis, N. Fick doubled scoring Brandon Casperson, Simonson grounded out scoring N. Fick, Katasse singled, scoring Carte, and Lewis reached on an error, scoring Katasse for a 7-4 lead.

JDHS added their eighth run in the bottom of the third inning as Blatnick earned a leadoff walk, stole second, advanced to third on a passed ball and scored on the play. TMHS added their final run in the top of the sixth as Mendoza singled in JJ McCormick.

Blatnick led JDHS with two runs scored; Blatnick, N. Fick, Simonson, Carte, Katasse, McAdoo and R. Fick had one hit each.

Mendoza and Ludeman had three hits apiece to lead TMHS, Ludeman had three RBI and Mendoza two. TMHS’ Andersen threw 1.2 innings, allowed six hits and three runs and Quinto relieved for 4.1 innings with one hit and one run, walking five and striking out six.

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé sophomore Nate Fick (10) is struck by a Thunder Mountain High School pitch during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé sophomore Nate Fick (10) is struck by a Thunder Mountain High School pitch during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

JDHS improves to 4-5 in the southeast conference and TMHS falls to 3-6. Sitka (6-3) split with Ketchikan (5-4) over the weekend. The Wolves will host the Region V tournament beginning Thursday.

“JDHS baseball is about competing and having fun,” Blatnick said. “I feel we have a good chance to win regions. The team has been growing every single game. We just keep getting better and better.”

Simonson said, “If we play our cards right we have a good chance of making it to state.”

JDHS head coach Chad Bentz said the Crimson Bears’ seniors have been great teammates and great people.

“They work hard, they are great teammates and great leaders,” Bentz said. “Landon and Lamar were here for four years, and Maika a year, but all of them did a great job in our program, represented us well and we look forward to what they will accomplish and wish them the best of luck.”

JDHS also honored assistant coach Erik McCormick for his 30 years of baseball service. McCormick has been involved in Juneau T-Ball, Little League, won a state championship with the Crimson Bears, coached the Midnight Suns and was president of that club, and helped bring American Legion baseball back to Juneau

“Anything and everything with baseball in Juneau has involved Rick McCormick,” Bentz said. “Legion, little league, high school and Midnight Suns.”

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé freshman Hunter Carte (7) is put out by Thunder Mountain High School first baseman Marcus Mendoza during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé freshman Hunter Carte (7) is put out by Thunder Mountain High School first baseman Marcus Mendoza during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

McCormick, a 1989 JDHS grad, began his coaching career in 1994, his first year out of college.

“I helped out a friend with a T-ball team and after I said I would show up for the first practice she never showed up again,” McCormick said. “So I inherited the team, I wasn’t related to any of them, and they are all grown up now and I have been coaching their kids and probably their grandkids.”

McCormick said there have been way too many moments to recall but coaching JDHS to the 2008 state championship, “Was pretty cool. We had a really good team. It was after Sitka had won three years in a row. So it was pretty rewarding. But every year there are special moments and that is what keeps me coming. Coaching doesn’t get old, the weather gets old though. The kids make it all fun.”

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Landon Simonson and family and friends. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Landon Simonson and family and friends. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Lamar Blatnick and family and friends. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Lamar Blatnick and family and friends. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Maika Piukala and family and friends. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Maika Piukala and family and friends. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Erik McCormick, center, shown with son Brock and wife Melissa, was honored by the Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé baseball team on Saturday for his 30 years of community baseball service. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Erik McCormick, center, shown with son Brock and wife Melissa, was honored by the Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé baseball team on Saturday for his 30 years of community baseball service. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Thunder Mountain High School coach Joe Tompkins talks to the Falcons during their game against the Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé Crimson Bears at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Thunder Mountain High School coach Joe Tompkins talks to the Falcons during their game against the Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé Crimson Bears at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Lamar Blatnick pitches to a Thunder Mountain High school batter during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Lamar Blatnick pitches to a Thunder Mountain High school batter during the Crimson Bears 3-0 win over the Falcons at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Landon Simonson fields a ground ball against Thunder Mountain High School at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Landon Simonson fields a ground ball against Thunder Mountain High School at Adair-Kennedy Field on Saturday. (Klas Stolpe / For the Juneau Empire)

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