ANACORTES — The Olympic Tigers won their first Junior American Legion baseball state championship Sunday, 5-4 over Burlington, when Danny Sullivan’s hard single drove in teammate Drew Leavy for the game-winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning.
“I’m on cloud nine,” Sullivan said by phone as the team made its way back to Bremerton from Anacortes.
Sullivan, who got the start and pitched eight strong innings, said the chemistry and desire by everyone on the team to play well and support each other was the difference.
“It makes it so much more fun,” he said.
Sullivan, who had struggled in his previous at-bats, said Leavy got a great start from third and the throw home was wide, allowing Leavy to score.
“It was all chaos after that,” he said. “I’ll never forget it.”
Leavy, who went 3-for-4 with a home run, two RBI, two runs scored and a stolen base, said he’s never been in a situation to score the winning run with a state title on the line and was glad to be there for his team.
“One thing (coach Nate) Andrews pointed out, he knew we were going to be successful because of our team chemistry,” Leavy said.
“We know we’re not the best team. We know we’re not the most athletic, (but) we do the little things right,” he said.
Olympic will now head to the American Junior Legion Northwest Regional as the Washington representative. Other teams include Montana, which has the state winner and a host team, Oregon, Alaska, Utah, Wyoming and Idaho.
The Tigers will play one of the Montana teams at 7:30 p.m. on Friday in Bozeman.