The group, which won a JBO title in 4th grade, finishes strong

by: DAN BROOD - LET'S GO -- Sherwood High School senior Logan Ballarche' lets out a yell after he scored in the sixth inning of Saturday's Class 5A state championship game. Ballarche' scored a pair of runs in the victory. KEIZER — The seniors on the Sherwood High School baseball team — and there are a bunch of them — got to celebrate in a big way following the Bowmen’s 11-4 win over Bend in Saturday’s Class 5A state championship baseball game played at Volcanoes Stadium.

But it wasn’t this group’s first celebration.

For most of the Bowmen seniors, the signs of something special showed up about eight years ago.

“We’ve been together for a long time,” Sherwood senior catcher Jacob Urbach said as the Bowmen celebrated on the Volcanoes Stadium baseball diamond on Saturday. “Back in fourth grade, we won state at Midget Federal. Now, we reclaimed the title.”by: DAN BROOD - PAIR OF SENIORS -- Sherwood's Cyrus Mooney (left) and Jacob Urbach are part of a big group of seniors on the Bowmen state championship squad.

That’s right, many of the Sherwood seniors that claimed state championship gold on Saturday were part of the Sherwood Midget Federal baseball team that defeated Gladstone in the Junior Baseball of Oregon state tournament title game played July 31, 2005 at Dierickx Field in Gladstone.

Of course, a lot has changed since then.

But, one thing is the same — the close-knit group that won the Midget Federal state crown back in 2005 is still a close-knit group as Sherwood High School seniors, and they’re state champions again.

“We’ve all been together since we played youth baseball,” said Sherwood senior Alex Barzee, who drove in four runs in Saturday’s state title game. “We’ve been together for a long time, and I love these guys.”

“We’ve been together forever,” Sherwood senior outfielder Cyrus Mooney said. “And we can’t ask for a better way to finish up.”

The group of 12 Bowmen seniors, which also includes Colton Waker, Logan Ballarché, Logan Dix, Joseph Balfour, Charlie Paul, Joseph Chamberlain, Anthony Sherwood, TJ Haimoto and Jordan Morales, seemed to play a big part in the squad’s success this year.

“We all knew our role,” Mooney said.

by: DAN BROOD - SENIOR STARS -- The 12 seniors on the state champion Sherwood High School baseball team includes (top row, from left) Jordan Morales, Anthony Sherwood, TJ Haimoto, Charlie Paul, Jacob Urbach, Colton Waker, Joseph Chamberlain, Logan Dix, Cyrus Mooney, Joseph Balfour (bottom row), Alex Barzee and Logan Ballarche'.“It’s been tremendous,” Waker said. “I think we all stepped up this year, and that really helped.”

Even before the season, Sherwood coach Jon Strohmaier knew that the seniors would have to take on a strong role this season for the squad to be successful.

“This past winter, I went to every senior’s house and talked to them about leadership,” Strohmaier said. “I held them accountable, and I asked them to hold me accountable. I think I grew more this year than ever before, because of the seniors. They set the tone.”

And the rest of the Bowmen followed.

“They’re probably the best group I’ve played with,” said Sherwood junior Riley Moore, who was the winning pitcher in Saturday’s title game. “They did a great job. I love those guys.”

“They meant everything to us,” Sherwood sophomore shortstop Zak Taylor said. “They’ve really helped me out. They were a very big part of all of this.”

And they got to finish up as state champions — reliving the glory of fourth grade.

“It’s tremendous,” Waker said. “We’re all good friends and this really brought us all together. It’s fantastic.”

Now, Sherwood will be looking for a new group to step up.

“It’s really nice that they got to go out with a championship,” Taylor said. “Now, it’s our turn.”

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