Mercer Island Islanders 2019 graduate Teague Conder (pictured) will continue his baseball career at Whitman College in Walla Walla. Photo courtesy of Teague Conder

Mercer Island Islanders 2019 graduate Teague Conder (pictured) will continue his baseball career at Whitman College in Walla Walla. Photo courtesy of Teague Conder

Conder to continue baseball career at Whitman College

Former Mercer Island third baseman embraces the action.

The hot corner is a comfortable place on the baseball diamond for Mercer Island Islanders 2019 graduate Teague Conder.

Conder, who earned 3A KingCo first-team, all-league honors as a third baseman, will play baseball for the Whitman College Blues Division-III baseball team in 2020. Whitman College is located in Walla Walla.

“It has always been one of my dreams to continue on and play at the next level. When I had the opportunity, I really wanted to take that step,” Conder said. “Whitman was the first team to reach out (recruit) to me and they really wanted me. They were great throughout the whole process. It is a good place to not only play baseball but is really good academically.”

Third base is universally known as one of the toughest positions in the infield. Quick reflexes, quick thinking and an accurate throwing arm are of utmost importance at the position.

“I like the fast pace of it. If you are standing in the outfield, you don’t get much action. At third base, you got to be on your toes at all times because you never know when a line drive will be hit right at you. That is why I like it,” Conder explained.

Conder, who played guard on the Islanders varsity boys basketball team during the 2018-19 season, believes his abilities on the hardwood contributed to his success as an infielder. Mercer Island baseball head coach Dominic Woody wouldn’t let Conder forget his basketball skills when he stepped on the baseball diamond.

“Woody definitely brought that into the baseball fold. He would say, ‘You got to be in a defensive stance at all times when you are playing third base.’ It is something he focused on,” Conder said.

Woody is one of the most popular coaches on the island due to his old-school disciplined approach.

“He just tells you how it is. He lets you know what your flaws are and ways you can improve. He is definitely hard nosed but that just shows how much he cares about all his players and his team,” Conder said of Woody.

The 2019 Mercer Island Islanders rebounded from a sluggish start (5-6 overall record at midseason) to win eight of their final 11 games en route to a 3A KingCo tournament championship and a berth in the 3A state tournament.

“It was really fun to be able to battle through all the adversity and win the KingCo tournament. I have been playing with these guys since I was 9 years old,” Conder said of his teammates. “To be able to bring another (KingCo) trophy home for coach Woody and keep the dynasty going was really fun.”

[flipp]

More in Sports

Islanders claim KingCo crown

The Mercer Island boys basketball team dominated Interlake, 61-36, in 3A KingCo championship.

Four Mercer Island wrestlers qualify for regionals

Four Mercer Island wrestlers qualified for the regional wrestling tournament on Feb.… Continue reading

Mercer Island girls basketball season ends in tiebreaker

The Islanders lost to Bellevue and Interlake in tiebreaker games on Feb. 8.

Whipple gets back into the pool despite blood-flow disorder

The Mercer Island senior was diagnosed with POTS before the season.

Harper sets American powerlifting records at 75 years old

Robert Harper had a record-setting performance at the USA Powerlifting Nationals in October 2019.

Ressmeyer and Motroni shine for Mercer Island gymnastics team

The Mercer Island gymnastics team took second in a meet with Lake… Continue reading

Leading the charge

Luke Wenzel tied the Mercer Island boys basketball record for charges drawn in his career.

Mercer Island basketball teams find success at holiday tournaments

The Mercer Island boys and girls basketball teams both went to out-of-state… Continue reading

Talented group of freshmen off to a fast start for Islanders

The Mercer Island boys swim and dive team has 16 freshmen on board.

Rallying interest in boys volleyball

Absolute Zero Volleyball Club on Mercer Island hosts annual boys volleyball tournament in March.

Northwest Yeshiva basketball teams face off against Grace Academy

The Northwest Yeshiva boys and girls basketball teams hit the hardwood against… Continue reading

2019: The year in sports for Mercer Island

Athletic success is a staple of the local community.