Kentlake second baseman Christopher Moore at the plate against the Spartans. Ben Ray / The Reporter

Kentlake second baseman Christopher Moore at the plate against the Spartans. Ben Ray / The Reporter

Kentlake's baseball season cut short in postseason

Falcons took home the 2023 NPSL crown, but dropped two straight in the district tournament.

The Kentlake Falcons baseball season came to a close in the second round of the West Central District Tournament with a 5-1 loss to Bainbridge High School on May 10.

“It’s disappointing. I thought we really had a chance, but that’s just how baseball goes,” Head Coach Michael Suguro said.

The Falcons were the 3A NPSL League champions, but their season was cut short. The Falcons fell in their first round matchup to Silas, 6-5,

“We hit the ball hard, but they were outs,” Suguro said on the team’s first loss of the playoffs.

Then they got matched up with a 19-2 Bainbridge squad.

“We got to tip our hat to their guy on the bump,” Suguro said. “I can’t really ask for too much. It’s hard to have a plan against a guy that can mix it up so well.”

Kentlake starting pitcher Devin Tep on the mound in for the Falcons. Ben Ray / The Reporter

Kentlake starting pitcher Devin Tep on the mound in for the Falcons. Ben Ray / The Reporter

Earlier this season, the two began their seasons against each other. In that contest, the Falcons fell to the Spartans, 4-2.

At one point in the season, the Falcons were 1-7. But they were able to fight their way out to the bottom of the standings and close out the season winning 10 of their last 11 games, and winning the NPSL over three really good Auburn area high schools.

“It looked bleak, but I can’t give enough credit to the kids on this team. Having a small roster, we really did have every kid contribute, and I can’t thank them enough,” said the Skipper.

In this game, the Falcons fell behind in the first, going down 2-0. But they were able to respond in the first with a run of their own.

The final run of the Kentlake season was scored by Chris Moore, who came around on an Ethan Loghry single.

Coach Suguro called David Pardey Jr. “one of the most decorated Falcons to ever put on a uniform,” and for the co-MVP it was hard to see the season end this way.

“It’s really sad it ended this way,” Pardey said.

Pardey wanted to leave the young team with advice and leadership even after the game was over.

“Stay dedicated, work hard. Just don’t stop the game you love playing,” he said.

His coach also echoed the amount of leadership not only Pardey put in, but the entire senior class.

“I can’t thank the seniors enough for what they brought in, especially Pardey ... He helped lead this young crop of kids,” Suguro said.

Looking to next season, the Falcons plan on building on the success this year and the difficulties of the beginning of this season and propel them next year.

“I think playing that difficult schedule toughened us up. It taught us how to work through adversity. It’s going to be tough. We lost a lot of good seniors but we’re young ... I think the future looks bright, I really do,” Suguro said.

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