Expectations never waver for the Mercer Island Islanders.
The baseball program won a Class 3A state championship in 2015 and advanced to the first round of the state playoffs in 2016. Last year, it defeated Edmonds-Woodway 2-1 to secure third place in the Class 3A state tournament. Following that game, head coach Dominic Woody showed pride in the program.
“The mentality around here is that we finish the season with a third place trophy and some people were disappointed. It is pretty indicative of where the program is. I think it really speaks volumes about the expectation level and where things have risen to and is going to fuel their fire going forward,” Woody said last May. “I definitely think Mercer Island baseball is a brand people are starting to recognize and we’re going to do everything we can to continue to build that brand. We want to make sure we can get back to the final four and improve upon our finish this season.”
Woody, who is in his sixth season as the Islanders head coach, lost Noah Hsue, Jack Smith, and Sam Rosenstein to graduation, but said that 12 players have returned from the 2017 varsity roster this spring. Woody said outfielder Alex Shanks will be in his fourth season as a starter. Islanders’ catcher Matt Boissoneault will be in his third season in the starting lineup.
“We are very deep all the way around,” Woody recently said of his team’s roster. “We have a large senior class that are very vocal and very constructive with their expressions with the younger players on the team. The upperclassman are setting the tone. There is a certain expectations that we play by as a team. They really help the younger guys to understand what to expect.”