Juneau's Gastineau Channel Little League Senior All-Stars rallied from four runs down to tie Ketchikan Thursday night, but an unearned run in the bottom of the seventh inning gave Ketchikan a 10-9 victory in the semifinals of the Alaska District 2 (Southeast) Senior (Age 15-16) Little League Tournament in Sitka.
Juneau trailed 9-5 entering the top of the sixth inning and closed the gap to 9-7, then Juneau tied the score 9-9 on a two-out, two-run single by David Coogan in the top of the seventh. But it wasn't enough as Ketchikan's Jesse Zaugg scored the game-winner, a two-out unearned run on Josh Robinson's single up the middle in the bottom of the seventh inning.
Juneau now plays Sitka at 6 p.m. tonight for the right to play Ketchikan again at 6 p.m. Saturday in the tournament's championship game. An if-necessary game will take place at 6 p.m. Sunday if Ketchikan should lose on Saturday. Sitka eliminated Prince of Wales 7-2 in Thursday's losers' bracket game in the double-elimination tourney.
Juneau was led by Coogan, who went 5-for-5 at the plate with three RBIs and three runs scored. Matt Freeman went 3-for-4 with three runs scored and a double, while Zach Kohan was 2-for-4 with two RBIs, Dylan Hickey went 2-for-4 with an RBI and Brett Fairchild was 1-for-4 with a double, an RBI and one run scored.
Kenny Terpsma, who picked up the victory on the mound for Ketchikan despite allowing 12 hits and nine runs, went 2-for-4 with a run, two RBIs and a double to lead Ketchikan. Braden Sharp hit what Juneau coach Mark Hickey called a ``wind-assisted'' grand slam homer in the third inning and Brandon Nicholas added a solo homer in the first and scored twice for Ketchikan.
``Kenny Terpsma no-hit the high school team last year (in the state invitational tournament), so you'd think we'd win when we score nine runs and get 12 hits off him,'' Hickey said. ``Terpsma hit a two-out double in the fifth (to make the score 9-5), and I thought we did pretty good to come back from that deficit.''
Trailing 9-7, Juneau tied the score in the top of the seventh and final inning as Kohan singled but was erased when Isaac Cadiente hit into a double-play. Pinch-hitter Kyle Lanz then drew a two-out walk and went to third on a double by Freeman, then both Lanz and Freeman scored on a two-run single by Coogan. The next hitter, Dylan Hickey, fouled off one pitch that almost went for an extra-base hit, then flew out to end the inning.
In the bottom of the seventh, Fairchild, Juneau's reliever, got the first two hitters out on a fly to left and a strikeout. But Zaugg hit a pinch-hit single and went to third when pinch-hitter Kraig Bailey reached on an error, then Terpsma was intentionally walked to load the bases. Robinson then singled up the middle to bring home Zaugg with the winning run.