Conor Harber’s 2019 baseball season went into the month of October, as the 2012 graduate of Astoria High School pitched his latest game Wednesday night for Acereros del Norte.

And his last start of the year turned out to be Game 7 of the Mexican League championship series, between the “Steelers of the North” and the “Leones de Yucatan,” in the Mexican equivalent of the World Series.

Acereros del Norte was the ultimate victor, scoring a 9-5 win over Yucatan to give the team its first Mexican League championship since Acereros was founded in 1974.

And Harber played a huge role in their drive to the title.

The Astoria grad — who has played in numerous cities since his days on the North Coast — finished one of his longest seasons ever by making six starts in the playoffs.

Managed by former Tacoma Rainiers manager Pat Listach, the Acereros run to the championship went against the odds, as the team faced elimination in all three playoff series.

They trailed Tijuana 3-2 in the semifinalsand were down 3-2 against Yucatan in the championship series.

No. 71 on the Acereros roster, Harber got the start in Wednesday’s Game 7. He only gave up two hits, but both were home runs. An unfortunate error on Acereros extended one inning, in which Yucatan took advantage with a three-run homer to tie the contest.

Acereros broke a 5-5 tie with a run in the sixth, two in the seventh and one more in the eighth. Harber pitched five-and-a-third innings and finished with a no-decision, but capped his 2019 season with a great finish.

In his last 10 appearances of the year, Harber had a 4-2 record, with a 3.19 earned run average over 59.1 innings pitched, with 54 strikeouts and 18 walks.

Hunt leads the Geoducks

Another Astoria graduate, Chloee Hunt (Class of 2016), is in the midst of a huge season for the Evergreen State College volleyball team.

A senior middle blocker for the Geoducks, Hunt currently leads the Cascade Collegiate Conference with a .364 hitting percentage.

She has started 16 of 18 matches and leads Evergreen in points (178.0). She is first on the team in solo blocks (12), block assists (50)and fourth in kills (141).

In their latest match, Evergreen lost to Northwest University in four sets, but Hunt had 20 kills with a .500 hitting percentage.

Hunt will play basketball this winter for Evergreen, while her brother Ian will be in his freshman season with the Evergreen men’s basketball team.

Mitchell named Athlete of the Week

Kaylee Mitchell, a sophomore on the Seattle Pacific cross-country team, was recently named the Great Northwest Athletic Conference female Athlete of the Week — for the second straight week.

Mitchell, who attended Astoria High School before transferring to Sprague, ran to an individual title in the elite Women’s Invitational division at the Capital Cross Challenge in Sacramento last Saturday.

The win followed a first-place finish at the Pacific Lutheran Invitational a week earlier.

Saturday’s race in Sacramento was a national-caliber meet, featuring eight teams ranked among the top 25 in NCAA Division II, along with a handful of Division 1 schools, including California of the Pac-12.

The 6-kilometer race (3.72 miles) had 322 runners, and Mitchell beat all of the others to the finish line, posting a 6K personal-best of 20 minutes, 30.2 seconds. She took the lead at about the two-mile mark and was in control the rest of the way, beating runner-up Jenny Sandoval of San Jose State by three seconds.

“Once she got up the lead pack, she knew what to do,” said Seattle Pacific distance coach Chris Reed. “And once she took the lead, she did it with confidence and conviction. It was a remarkable race. (Mitchell) ran with confidence and she ran with passion. It was incredible to watch.”

Her team finished eighth out of 40 teams.

Other local athletes competing in fall sports at the collegiate or professional levels:

Astoria

Josiah Hirsch, Fr., Occidental football

Madi Landwehr, So., Clackamas CC volleyball

Keldon Littell, RS-So., Oregon State football

Jeramy Poyer, Sr., Dickinson State football

Jordan Poyer, Buffalo Bills

Henry Samuelson, Fr., George Fox football

Seaside

Lizzy Barnes, Jr., Guilford soccer

Travis Fenton, Fr., Western Oregon football

Alexander Teubner, R-Fr., Boise State football

Tori Tomlin, Fr., Linn-Benton volleyball

Ilwaco

Ethan Personius, Fr., Evergreen soccer

Regional athletes competing in fall sports:

Banks

Megan Bunn, Sr., Eastern Oregon volleyball

Kimberly Jordan, So., Clackamas CC soccer

Twister McComas, Jr., Western Oregon football

Ellie Nieland, So., Centralia soccer

Josiah Ochoa, Fr., Pacific football

Gaston

Zach Kress, So., Linfield football

Neah-Kah-Nie

Tristan Bennett, Fr., Western Oregon football

August Davidson, Fr. SW Oregon cross country

Nestucca

Tea Chatelain, So., NW Christian cross country

Rainier

Maria Alberto, Fr., Mt. Hood cross country

Breana Edwards, So., Indiana U. volleyball

Johnathan Guisinger, Jr., George Fox cross country

Scappoose (former Cowapa League athletes)

Alyssa Bakkensen, So., Linfield soccer

Lucy Davidson, Sr., U. Portland soccer

Tevin Jeannis, R-Fr., Oregon football

James Jones, R-Fr., Eastern Oregon football

John Kavulich, So., U. Portland cross country

David Krupsky, Jr., Western Oregon football

Gavin Larson, Fr., Western Oregon football

Terrance Lewis, Fr., Linfield football

David Mayo, New York Giants

Connor McNabb, Fr., Linfield football

Natalie Muth, Sr., U. Portland soccer

Austin Norgaard, Fr., Pacific cross country

Mason Smiens, Fr., Western Oregon football

Jerad Toman, Fr., Portland State football

Tillamook

Phoebe Brown, So., Portland State cross country

Dylan Dickson, Fr., Clackamas CC cross country

Alejandro Herrera, Fr., SW Oregon soccer

Carter Kunert, Fr., Lane CC cross country

Zachary Macias, Sr., Pacific football

Kaler Moore, R-Jr., Eastern Oregon football

Kara Putman, So., Pacific cross country

Itzel Vazquez, Fr., Pacific cross country

Jordan Zweifel, Jr., Pacific volleyball

Valley Catholic

Chloe Brock, Fr., George Fox soccer

Regan Dean, Jr., Linfield volleyball

Taylor Isaac, Fr., Pacific cross country

Taylor Menkens, So., Seattle Pacific soccer

Jakob Pruitt, Jr., Western Oregon football

Ben Robbins, R-Fr., Southern Oregon football

Gary Henley is a sports reporter for The Astorian. Contact him at 503-861-8493 or ghenley@dailyastorian.com.

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