The West edged the East 3-2 in the 2012 West Coast League All-Star Game before a near capacity crowd of 2,006 at Borleske Stadium in Walla Walla, Washington.
The game featured outstanding pitching by both teams and a thrilling finish that saw the East nearly rally in the bottom of the ninth to tie or win the mid-summer classic.
Wenatchee skipper Ed Knaggs’ East squad made things exciting with lead-off singles by Kelowna’s Jace Conrad and the AppleSox Tyler Moore. But Kitsap closer Colin Feldtman of University of Portland (pictured) went on to strikeout the side to record the high-pressure save.
With one out Conrad and Moore executed a double steal to put runners on second and third for Patrick Johnson of Kelowna. Feldtman went on to punch out Johnson and then Bellingham slugger Jarel Lewis to finish the game.
Feldtman tossed 1 1/3 innings and struck out four.
West pitchers registered 14 strikeouts in total. The East only collected hits off Oregon frosh-to-be Cole Irvin of Cowlitz and Feldtman.
Cowlitz southpaw Mikey Murray of Hawaii Pacific earned the win.
The West offense was led by WCL Player of the Week Joshua Wong of Klamath Falls and Corvallis Knights outfielder Connor Hofmann of Oregon as both collected three hits.
Hofmann earned All-Star Game MVP honors as the junior-to-be banged out three singles and scored the game’s tying run.
His Corvallis teammate Caleb Whalen of Portland delivered the game-winning hit in the 7th with a RBI double.
The West recorded 10 hits and scored twice in the fifth-inning to tie the game. Cowlitz outfielder Austin Diemer of Cal State Fullerton tied the game with a RBI groundout.
The East scored first tallying two unearned runs in the 4th-inning. Bellingham’s Nathaniel Causey of Arizona State plated the second run with a RBI single off Irvin.
The MLB Scouting Bureau named Cowlitz right-hander Taylor Williams of Mt. Hood CC and future UCLA Bruin Hunter Virant of Walla Walla as co-Top Prospects of the game as voted on by the 19 MLB scouts in attendance.
Before the game, Wenatchee’s Taylor Sparks of UC Irvine and Klamath’s Austin Byler of Nevada-Reno squared off in the finals of the WCL All-Star Game Home Run Derby. Sparks was victorious and hit a total of 11 homers in the derby. The opening round featured 7 blasts each by Sparks and Kelowna’s Kyle Pearson of LSU-Shreveport and 6 by Byler and 5 by Walla Walla’s Shane Zeile of UCLA.