Relentless Warriors remain atop Wesco 3A South standings | Baseball

Cooper hits his first-ever walk-off HR to lead E-W to 5-4 victory over Hawks
By David Pan | Apr 13, 2017
Photo by: David Pan Edmonds-Woodway’s Karsen Tjarnberg pitches against Mountlake Terrace during a Wesco 3A South game Thursday, April 6, at Mountlake Terrace High School.

Edmonds-Woodway’s Kosta Cooper picked the right time to hit his first home run of the season.

Cooper smacked a two-run shot to lead the Warriors to a come-from-behind 5-4 victory over Mountlake Terrace in a Wesco 3A South baseball game Thursday, April 6 at Mountlake Terrace High School.

The blast to left field was Cooper’s first-ever walk-off home run and kept Edmonds-Woodway undefeated in league and in sole possession of first place.

The Warriors overcame a 2-0 first inning deficit and trailed 4-3 heading into the bottom of the ninth inning.

“We have this thing on our team that we’re selfless and relentless,” Cooper said. “We don’t give up no matter what the score is. Our entire dugout was going the entire game. No matter what the score is we kept our heads up high and just kept going.”

The Hawks extended their lead to 3-0 in the second before Edmonds-Woodway scored a run in the bottom of the second. Senior Garrison Krohn drove in two runs with a double in the fifth inning to tie the score at 3.

Mountlake Terrace then caught a break when Edmonds-Woodway reliever Karsen Tjarnberg threw a wild pitch that allowed a runner to score in the top of the ninth inning.

With one out, Jacob Kitchen reached first base on an error by the right fielder and advanced to second on a balk. Mountlake Terrace’s Kendall Yackley then got the next batter to fly out before Cooper ended the game.

Edmonds-Woodway starter Brandon Mitchell pitched four innings before being relieved by Tjarnberg, a sophomore.

Tjarnberg also picked up the win when the Warriors beat Mountlake Terrace 7-3 on Tuesday, April 4.

“He’s incredible,” Cooper said. “He’s really come up big for us this year, not having much relief pitching. … He’s been lights out every single time. It’s pretty impressive for a sophomore.”

Tjarnberg has become Edmonds-Woodway go-to reliever, Warriors coach Dan Somoza said. “I don’t know where we’d be without him. … He’s cool under pressure. He throws strikes. He did an outstanding job today.”

In Tuesday’s contest, Mountlake Terrace led 3-1 after three innings. The Warriors tied the score with a pair of runs in the fifth and pushed across four runs in the the seventh for the victory.

“This team doesn’t give up,” Somoza said. “That’s one thing I love about them.”

Mitchell hit two home runs to lead Edmonds-Woodway. Starter Nick Hull went 5 2/3 innings and Tjarnberg pitched the final 1 1/3 innings.

Cooper plays select ball with a couple of the Mountlake Terrace players.

“We knew what they had. We were prepared,” Cooper said. “Brandon and Nick both pitched incredible this entire series. We were able to put the bat on the ball and hit some line drives.”

With a 2-1 victory over Meadowdale on Tuesday, April 11, Edmonds-Woodway improved to 6-0 in the league and 6-2 overall. Hull allowed only three hits and struck out 11 in seven innings of work. Chad Curits hit a double and drove in both of the Warriors’ runs.

Somoza has been impressed by the way the Warriors are winning tight games.

“You can’t ask for much more than that,” he said. “The thing I like about it is we’re playing close games and we’re winning close games. Playoffs, that’s our eventual goal. You’ve got to win those close games, so we’re learning how to as a team.”

Cooper attributes much of the Warriors’ success to the closeness among the players.

“It’s more of a family than a team,” he said. “We do a lot of team bonding. ... We’re really close with each other and do a lot of stuff outside of practice together. It’s a lot of fun to be on this team.”

Somoza credits the seniors for working hard to build team unity.

“They provide the energy and team leadership,” he said. “I’m very proud of those guys. I’ve been with them for a long time. It’s fun to see them grow up and become young men that they are and leaders.”

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