McCormick Signs, Seals, Delivers in Crimson Bears Senior Night Win

    Juneau-Douglas High School Kalé catcher Brock McCormick and pitcher Garrett Bryant talk on the mound in the seventh inning of their senior night win over Thunder Mountain on Tuesday. (Klas Stolpe/KINY)

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - Juneau-Douglas High School Kalé senior Brock McCormick signed a college letter of intent, sealed senior night honors with hugs for his parents and grandparents, and delivered six innings of work from the bump to give the Crimson Bears a 5-2 win over Thunder Mountain on Tuesday at Adair Kennedy Field.

      “It was a fun game, always a good atmosphere when we play Thunder,” Juneau-Douglas coach Chad Bentz said. “Brock pitched a heck of a game. He attacked the strike zone, he made them put the ball in play. We made a couple mistakes in the field which Thunder took advantage of and good teams do that. But we were able to bounce back and put some runs on the board.”

      The night began with McCormick signing a scholarship letter to attend Barstow Community College in the high desert of California with a chance to earn a catching position with the Vikings.

      The Crimson Bears then honored senior players McCormick, Garrett Bryant, Luke Bibb, Ben Coutu, Christian Ludeman, Malakai Nichols, Olin Rawson and Rae Razor for their final home game.

      After that, McCormick took the mound and began throwing his 75 pitches on the night. He allowed four hits and two runs while striking out five and walking one. McCormick moved to his main position of catcher after the 75th pitch.

      Bryant closed out the game, taking to the mound in the top of the seventh inning, striking out the first two Falcons he faced and getting the third to ground to sophomore second baseman Caden Mesdag who tossed the corralled orb over to Ludeman at first.

      The Crimson Bears scored four runs in the bottom of the third inning as Coutu hit a one out single, Mesdag doubled and junior Gavin Millard doubled in Coutu and Mesdag.

      McCormick followed with a walk and Ludeman doubled in Millard and McCormick.

      The Falcons got their two runs in the top of the fourth inning as senior Josh Carte singled, senior Oliver Mendoza reached on an error, both stole a base and junior Peyton Lewis lined a two-out pitch into center field to score Carte and Mendoza.

    “I think we showed up to play,” Thunder Mountain coach Joe Tompkins said. “We met some really good pitchers and we showed up to play and never gave up. I am proud of them.”

      Falcons’ junior Preston Williams had a strong fielding outing at third base.

      “He is peaking at the right time,” Tompkins said. “I am really happy with the team. They are coming together at the right time. They are starting to believe in themselves and are believing in the coaching they are getting.”

      The Crimson Bears got their final run in the bottom of the fifth inning as Bryant reached on a fielders choice with one out and Rawson singled him home.

      Crimson Bears Millard and Ludeman had two RBI apiece and Rawson one; Millard had two hits, junior Kai Schmidt, Mesdag, Ludeman, Bryant, Rawson and Coutu one hit each; Mesdag, Millard, McCormick, Bryant and Coutu scored one run each; and Mesdag, McCormick, Ludeman and freshman Lamar Blatnick earned one walk each.

      The Falcons’ Lewis had two RBI; junior Isaiah Nelson, Carte, Mendoza and Lewis had one hit each; Carte and Mendoza scored one run apiece; and freshman Kasen Ludeman earned one walk.

      Thunder Mountain’s Lewis started on the mound and went four innings, allowed five hits and four runs, and struck out three while walking two.

      Mendoza relieved for two innings, allowed three hits and one run, and struck out one and walked two.

      The Falcons played the Sitka Wolves last week while the Crimson Bears had Ketchikan cancel due to their cities coronavirus outbreak.

      “You could tell we hadn’t played in a while,” Bentz said. “We were a little off timing wise. We made a couple physical mistakes but that happens and we just have to let that go and move on to the next play. But the guys played well. It was a great win. I am happy for the seniors, it went well for them. It was cool to have Brock sign his letter of intent here at the field where it all started for him. You know, it is sad seeing these guys at the plate, seeing them go, just watching them grow over the seasons as young adults and seeing them mature as a ball player and a person.”

      JDHS travels to play the Sitka Wolves this weekend and TMHS hosts the Petersburg Vikings. The Falcons will honor their seniors at 5:45 p.m. Saturday at Adair Kennedy Field.

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