TRAVERSE CITY — The Glen Lake baseball team suffered only two losses during the regular season and after Saturday’s regional it has officially avenged both of those defeats in the postseason.
The Lakers captured their second straight Division 4 regional championship, downing Bellaire 4-1 in the championship game at Frankfort High School. That win came after a pre-district victory more than a week ago over Suttons Bay — the other team to beat the Lakers this season.
“We didn’t play our best game the first time we played Bellaire,” said Glen Lake senior Thomas Waning, who got the win in the Lakers’ 4-1 semifinal win over Frankfort to start the day’s action. “We played pretty sloppy baseball and this time we came out and played our best baseball, so it was good.”
Bellaire had advanced to the final after getting a 16-6 mercy of Marion.
Zach Cooper was the winning pitcher in the championship game as he improved to 13-0 on the season. Cooper allowed only four hits and struck out eight.
The Lakers (31-2-1) will face the winner of the Rogers City regional in Tuesday’s quarterfinal. A win there would put them back into the state semifinals, where they were eliminated last season.
“It feels amazing,” said Waning. “It’s my senior year and we keep winning. It’s an amazing feeling. We won it (the regional) last year, but this year it’s more special because it’s my final season.”
The Lakers’ celebration was somewhat reserved after the regional title, but that’s due to the philosophy head coach Kris Herman has impressed upon his team.
“The big thing with us is to stay steady,” said Herman. “If you get too high or too low in baseball, the game itself is going to beat you. So if you let yourself get too high with the runs that you get. Let yourself get too low with the errors you get or the strikeouts, the game itself is going to eat you up. These guys, they’re really good about staying steady — good or bad. Whenever the ride ends we’ll celebrate when it’s done and look at it on the mantle at that time. Until then we’ve got things we want to work on and get done.”