May 19 – Midway through her college career in terms of eligibility, Woodland’s Olivia Gray used her redshirt sophomore year at Portland State to no longer establish herself as a dangerous newcomer to the college scene. Division I, but as one of the best weapons in the Big. Sky Conference has to offer.
With Grey’s Vikings coming in third in the conference and missing out on the NCAA Tournament, the book is officially closed for its second full season in Portland, and it ended up being pretty big.
Gray made the honorable mention jump to the first-team conference at the Big Sky year-end awards. She also earned a spot on the All-Tournament Team for the second straight season after pitching nearly every inning of the Vikings’ run in the conference tournament, despite just eight points of support in four outings.
The sophomore finishes his season either first or second in just about every major Big Sky pitching stat, leading the conference in strikeouts (214) and opposing batting average (.203) while finishing second in innings. thrown (184 1/3), ERA (2.13) and wins (18).
Tommy Brandenburg (Oregon Baseball)
After starting the season in the starting rotation, Tommy Brandenburg moved to the bullpen at Oregon, where he got his feet wet and caught up on the college game.
Since stepping into the relief role in mid-March, the Kalama product has allowed three runs in four appearances, cutting his ERA down to 7.56.
The Ducks currently sit fifth in the Pac-12, on the bubble for an NCAA Tournament bid. Before that — and after finishing their regular season against No. 25 Arizona — is baseball’s first-ever Pac-12 tournament. With a double-elimination tournament of up to six games in five days, Brandenburg could see some very significant innings as pitching squads shrink.
Elias Farland (Washington State Baseball)
In Pullman, RA Long alum Elias Farland saw expanded action in the WSU bullpen for a Cougar team currently battling to stay out of the Pac-12 basement.
In 14 appearances this season, Farland is averaging one strikeout per inning, but currently has a 7.65 ERA with just three scoreless outings this season.
His best recent outing came on May 11, in a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth in a win over UC Riverside.
Andrew Walling (Mississippi State Baseball)
After stops in Oregon State and eastern Oklahoma State, Walling’s train has arrived in Stark Vegas this season, but Bulldog fans have only had the pleasure of seeing it twice. until now.
In two appearances — the most recent being on April 19 — the former RA Long faced 11 batters and walked five, but still didn’t allow a hit or run.
Blake Kukula (Seattle U Men’s Golf)
The fisherman-turned-Redhawk just completed his second season on Capitol Hill, one in which he appeared in all 11 outings for Seattle U this spring. Kukula, an Ilwaco alum, finished his campaign finishing 45th with an all-around score of 229 at the WAC Championships in Boulder City, Nevada earlier this month.
Ethan Sterkel (Western Washington Athletics)
At the Division II level, RA Long’s Ethan Sterkel helped the Western Washington men’s track team win their third straight outdoor GNAC title this past weekend in Ellensburg.
The former lumberjack finished his sophomore season in winning fashion, claiming the conference title with a 23-foot-11 long jump and climbing to third in the WWU record books. The mark is Sterkel’s first outdoor GNAC title; he already has two indoor medals.
Sterkel also earned the Vikings points towards the team title with a fourth-place finish in the high jump, clearing 6-foot-6.25.
On the LCC front
Four homegrown products have just completed their first regular seasons at Story Field, with LCC poised to enter the playoffs.
Kelso’s Nick Miller played 33 games for the Red Devils in the infield, recording a .245 batting average with 16 RBI and five stolen bases.
On the hill, Rainier’s Brayden Marcum is second on the team in innings pitched (54) and strikeouts (51), and his 1.17 ERA is fourth-best in the NWAC. RA Long’s Jadon Williamson and Kelso’s Jase Schueller both saw less of the mound but both made two appearances in the past 10 days, with Williamson striking out all four batters he faced in the LCC game against DI Utah Valley.
On the softball field, Kelso alum Kennedy Williams appeared in 27 games for the Devils, mostly as a backup, with a pair of hits to her name in 19 at bats. Clatskanie’s Alexis Smith won a grand slam in the LCC’s March 5 win over Columbia Basin but hasn’t played a match since, while Rainier’s Kyle Cook has pitched just two innings in three outings, the last of which on March 13.
Not quite old timers yet
Three weeks ago, junior halfback Kelso Conner Noah added his name to the list of local athletes continuing their careers, announcing his commitment to play DI football in Nevada in two falls.
Noah, officially listed as a three-star athlete by 247sports, scored 13 touchdowns and eclipsed 1,000 yards last season, in his first full campaign as the Hilanders’ No. 1 option in the backfield.
The Wolfpack began recruiting Noah when Jay Norvell was in charge in Reno, but after he left for Colorado State, Ken Wilson — and running backs coach Vai Taua, who stayed on when Norvell left — moved on. kept their interest.
“I just loved the energy and the way they played, the coaches, the energy coach Vai had me really excited to make my decision,” Noah told SBLive.com when he walked away. ‘is engaged.
Before heading south, Noah will have one more season to lead the Hilanders, who may well find themselves with a few more college commitments before all is said and done.
The previous week, Israel Rutherford of RA Long announced his commitment to padding for Division-III Pacific University in Forest Grove, Ore.
Last season, Rutherford earned second-team 2A GSHL honors as a linebacker, and was also one of the Jacks’ top options as a receiver alongside Jamond Harris, who signed on with Pacific Lutheran earlier in the year.
Staying at RA Long for a while, Miranda Lomax, the Lumberjills’ leading scorer on the basketball court, has announced her commitment to D-II Concordia University Irvine, where she will play her hardwood game next winter. The GSHL 2A first-team goaltender had 20 points on 12 occasions last season.
Crossing over to the other side of Longview, Mark Morris’ Ellie Weber signed to play volleyball at D-III Lewis and Clark on May 9. Weber, who earned a spot on the 2A GSHL first team at the end of the year, led the Monarchs in attack and defense, with 145 kills and 122 digs.
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