Though the season didn't conclude the way Michael Baillergeon wanted, Sunday certainly represented a nice consolation prize.
For the first time in Leavenworth baseball history, according to coach Joe Allison, a Pioneer was given the top state honor when Baillergeon was named the Class 5A State Player of the Year this past weekend.
“He finally reached his potential,” Allison said. “He is a phenomenal athlete, has always worked real hard and this year he just dialed it to a new level.”
The outfielder, who finished 2013 with a .456 batting average, an on-base percentage of .512 and 25 RBIs, was also selected first-team all-State, first-team all-Sunflower and was an honorable mention selection for the Sunflower League Play of the Year award.
Other Leavenworth players receiving honors included Eli Keppler, who racked up first-team all-Sunflower and second-team all-state recognition. The outfielder hit .375 and scored 24 runs.
Pioneer pitcher and utility infielder Judson Cole was a first-team all-Sunflower selection as a utility player, second-team as a pitcher, as well as an honorable mention all-State recipient.
“This was back-to-back first team selections for Eli and Michael and Judson was selected first or second team all four years of his high school career,” Allison said. “Judson and Eli, along with Michael and JT Core, represented our program from day one and took it to new heights.”
Leavenworth catcher Zach Harris was given honorable mention all-Sunflower and all-State, while pitchers Billy Harrah and James Gladieux received all-Sunflower honorable mention nods.
The Pioneers finished the year 9-13 overall, 4-8 in the Sunflower League, before losing by a single run to Shawnee Heights in extra innings during the regional championship.