5 Athletes to Watch in spring sports championships
Shorewood slugger Trevor Mitsui, a likely high selection in next month's baseball draft, is among the athletes to watch at the state championships this weekend.
Seattle Times staff reporter
First things first for hard-hitting Mitsui of Shorewood
1 Even to Trevor Mitsui, the numbers are mind-boggling.
His .712 batting average, .856 on-base percentage and 1.635 slugging percentage are off the charts.
"It is kind of crazy," the Shorewood first baseman admitted. "It is kind of, 'Wow!' "
And this season is no fluke. Mitsui's four-year career marks are impressive as well: .507, .686 and 1.022. He collected his 100th career run batted in with his 28th home run (13th this season) on Saturday as the Thunderbirds advanced to the Class 3A semifinals.
"He's the greatest high-school hitter I've ever seen, period," Shorewood coach Wyatt Tonkin said. "I've never seen anyone close to him."
Mitsui (6 feet 4, 230 pounds) shakes off the frustration of frequently being pitched around. Many of his 42 walks this season were intentional.
Mitsui has a scholarship to Washington, but is likely to be drafted next month and said going pro "is definitely a possibility." This weekend, though, he wants a prep championship.
"I'm just focusing right now on winning state, then I'll worry about the draft," he said.
Holy Names' Allen aims for return to top in 3A tennis
2 Natalie Allen wants her title back.
The Holy Names senior, after winning the Class 3A state singles championship in 2009, remembers the sting of last year's loss in the final to Sasha Carter of Bainbridge.
"It kind of made me extra motivated," Allen said. "I really want to take it again this year."
Allen and Carter have met four times already this season. Allen lost in straight sets the first time, then swept the next three meetings, including the district-title match.
Allen said she improved her game this season by getting stronger, which could also help when she attends West Point — the start of what she hopes is a long Army career.
"I just want to serve my country," she said.
O'Dea sophomore Taylor hopes to tear it up in 100
3 Football, basketball or track? O'Dea sophomore Tatum Taylor is happy he doesn't have to choose.
"It's pretty much whatever season I'm in, that's the sport I'm loving," he said.
So he's enamored with track right now and is expected to contend for a title in the 100. His 10.68 last week ranks No. 1 in the state in 3A this year. He placed sixth at state as a freshman.
"I would live to PR and win it," Taylor said.
He also will run the 200 and be part of O'Dea's two relays.
Vocal Faist leads the way for Juanita softball team
4 Alexa Faist calls it taking charge.
But, yes, she has been called bossy.
"Just by my mother and sister," she said.
Faist is the leader of the second-ranked Juanita softball team in a variety of ways. As the leadoff batter, she is hitting .575 with 32 runs and 21 RBI. She's 11 for 11 in stolen-base attempts. And in the outfield, she's made only two errors all season. Plus, she is vocal.
"She loves to be heard, which is nice for us as coaches," Juanita's Kristian Dahl said.
As Faist puts it, "I just like being in charge."
She hopes to close out her prep career by leading the Rebels to their first 3A fastpitch title.
"I think we're pretty confident," Faist said.
Eastlake's Gallagher gives glimpse of offensive skills
5 Once in a while, Eastlake defender Michael Gallagher gets the urge to show off his offensive skills with the soccer ball.
As coach Adam Gervis puts it, "He knows when to be cheeky."
Gallagher, a junior, might flick the ball just over an opponent's head as a pass to himself, or dribble between the opponent's legs — a reminder that he used to be a crafty midfielder before being moved to the back line two years ago.
"It's fun, because you can show other people you're not a complete giraffe back there," he said. "It's nice to show you have some skill, too."
Gervis considers Gallagher the most skilled defender in the state and he's a key reason the Wolves are in the 4A Final Four.
"He does things that I've not seen before," he said.
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