On the last official day for Ellensburg High School’s 2018-19 school year, athletic director Cole Kanyer held an early morning event on Wednesday for three graduated seniors.

Brady Helgeson, Damien Anderson and Riley Seed officially signed their letter of intent to continue athletics at the collegiate level.

EHS BASEBALL SENDS OFF TWO

The Ellensburg baseball team has sent a plethora of players to the collegiate level already under head coach Todd Gibson.

Seniors Jadon Bugni (Washington State University) and Tyler Polacek (Columbia Basin College) signed their letter of intent earlier this school year.

And on Wednesday, two more seniors are heading out to play college ball.

Helgeson will be down at Phoenix College and Seed is staying local to compete at Yakima Valley College.

Whether it was Helgeson’s flurry on the mound or Seed’s anomalous catches in center field, both were integral parts of the EHS program for the past few years. The two helped etch the Bulldogs name twice into the state trophy.

“Brady and Riley are competitors and winners,” head coach Todd Gibson said. “Their individual and team accomplishments speak for themselves, and they will be players we use as examples of what Bulldog baseball is supposed to look like for a long time.

“Besides that, they are both just fun and good dudes that have been a pleasure to coach. These kids are all family to us coaches, the players they played with, the ones before them and the ones who come after them. I know these two will show their faces around the program in the future and I’m sure they’ll both contribute to their new teams just like they did in their time here at EHS.”

Seed was planning on waiting to choose a college until he finished playing summer ball with Yakima Valley Pepsi Pak, but made his decision earlier because it was close to home and he liked the campus.

He was looking for a school that had the same winning mentality as EHS, and he believes Yakima Valley College possesses the same.

“I always wanted to continue my baseball career,” Seed said. “Finally get to do that.”

Helgeson was in communication with a few local colleges in the Northwest Athletic Conference, but he always wanted to go down to Arizona.

“I couldn’t pass up this opportunity,” he said.

Phoenix College is part of the National Junior College Athletic Association. He’ll be on the mound for his new team.

DAMIEN TO CLARK COLLEGE

Anderson will be heading to Vancouver to Clark College to run for the track and field team. He was considering Spokane Falls CC, but it was narrowed down to those two schools.

He was looking to get into the physical therapy and what kind of scholarship he would receive when deciding where to continue his education.

“It’s a weight off my chest,” Anderson said.

He’s been a cross country runner since his freshman year at EHS and said it was a rough ride to get where he is today.

Anderson struggled his first year and it wasn’t any better as a sophomore, dropping two minutes in his 5K time.

But he progressed as a junior, making varsity and going to state as an alternate. He was able to get his 5K time down to 18:10.

Senior season, he dealt with some injuries but was a varsity runner and went to state as an alternate once again. He maintained his time in the low 18’s.

“He has been possibly the most improved athlete I have ever coached,” said cross country coach Jeff Hashimoto.

He ran in the 4x400 meter relay for the track team with Nolan Meyer, Gabe Fjellstad and Patrick Adkisson. At regionals, the four placed second in the event (3:34.32) to earn a bid to state.

“Seeing the excitement and the elation this spring when his team qualified for the state track and field meet was probably one of the coolest experiences I’ve had to see a young man come out of his shell just in sheer elation of excitement for the success of this team has had,” Kanyer said of Anderson.

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