Wildcats 14/15A Night at Lions Park
The 14/15A Wildcats finished off a very strong season finishing MBL Region 1 play with an overall record of 11-4. This record was good enough to be the Runner-Up in the final standings. The team received commemorative bats for their finish.
During the MBT State Tournament the Wildcats went undefeated in the weather shortened pool play with a 1-0-1 record. One thing you can say about this team is they Never Give Up! In both games, the Wildcats stayed composed, rallied from behind and refused to accept defeat. They beat East Ridge 9-8 and tied Lakeville North 6-6.
The Wildcats faced one of their toughest opponents of the year against the Medford Gold traveling team. The game was close throughout and the Wildcats came up just short of advancing with a 2-1 loss. It was a fantastic game free of errors and tough at bats.
Congratulation Wildcats on a fantastic season!!!
During the span of six days (June 19 through 24) the Wildcats traveled to Bloomington five times for two regional games and the Bloomington Tournament. The Wildcats compiled a 2-4 record during that time competing against the toughest competition of the year. The Wildcats continued solid defense during this road trip but the bats fell silent until they broke out during the final game.
June 19 vs Bloomington Blue - Bloomington Blue appearer to be the Wildcats' nemesis this year as they remained the only team to defeat the Wildcats up to this point. The Wildcats brought an overall record of 11-2 into this game. In the third match up of the season the Wildcats jumped out to an ealry 2-1 lead. Bloomington continued to hit the ball hard and and regained a 7-2 lead into the final inning. The Wildcats continued to battle and put a couple runs up in the final inning and brought the tying run to the plate but the rally fell just short with a final score of 7-4.
June 21 vs Mankato Royals - Mankato is making a case for the best team across all regions of of 14/15A. They brought an undefeated record into the tournament and didn't disappoint their fans. They went on to win the tournament with strong defense and aggressive offense. They will win all six games while allowing only four runs the entire tournament. The Wildcats gave them a run for their money bringing a 0-0 game into the fourth. Mankato strung together six hits in the fourth inning to take a 5-0 lead. This was enough for the win with a final score of 7-1.
June 22 vs St Paul Highland - This game was a very well played game with both defenses shining. The Wildcat bats fell silent in this game struggling to put up any crooked numbers. The Wildcats held the lead 3-2 into the fourth but found themselves down 4-3 after that frame. While the Wildcats had their opportunities, they were unable to get the timely hit and left too many runners on the bases. The final score was 5-3.
June 22 vs St Louis Park - The Wildcats won their only meeting during the regular season 11-5. This game would be much closer. Wildcat defense and pitching dominated the action during this game. SLP put up one run in each of the first two innings and then the Wildcats shut them down. The Wildcats put up a couple insurance runs in the top of the 7th inning to take a 5-3 lead. The pressure was on in the bottom of the 7th with SLP loading the bases but fly out to center field and a final strikeout ended this game with a 5-2 Wildcats win.
The strong Wildcats defense helped the Wildcats advance out of pool play with a 1-2 record as they ended on top of the "fewest runs allowed" tie breaker across the at large spots. Unfortunately this meant another match up with the top seeded Mankato in the first round of the brackets.
June 23 vs Mankato - The Wildcats were happy for another chance to upend the Royals but it wouldn't happen on this day. Mankato once again put together a strong offensive outpouring scoring 8 runs in one inning. Makato's top notch defense made for a quick game and a final score of 11-0 in 5 innings.
June 24 vs Bloomington Red - The Wildcats bats bounced back in this regional game. While the Wildcats found themselves down 5-0 after one inning, strong pitching, defense and lively bats helped them rally to a 16-7 win. Both of these teams advanced into bracket playoffs during the weekend tournament. This meant many pitchers on both sides had elevated pitch counts during the week. The Wildcats were able to string together strong pitching during the final 6 innings and capped off a great 16-7 win by striking out the side 1-2-3 in the bottom of the 7th. The Wildcats find themselves atop the Region 1 Standings with a 10-2 record.
The week ahead will continue to be competitive baseball as they will face St Louis Park for a third time this season followed by playing two very strong Minnetonka teams.
The week of June 10 brought two nail biters for the Wildcats and their fans. Both games went back and forth the entire way. In the end the Wildcats rallied for wins against Bloomington Red and Plymouth Wayzata.
The Wildcats had the opportunity "Walk Off" as winners in their June 10th game against Bloomington Red under the beautiful lights of Waconia Lions Park. Thank goodness for the lights as this game went the distance and ended after 10:30 pm. The Wildcats trailed by 5 in the late innings but continued to chip away. Down 10-7 in the bottom of the 7th, the Wildcats went to work and combined clutch batting with aggressive base running to score four and an exciting 11-10 walk off win.
The Wildcats traveled to Plymouth on June 11 for another game filled with emotion and anxiety. The game started a few minutes early with concerns of potential weather. Good thing too, as this game went into extra innings. Both teams held the lead several times. The Wildcats down 8-7 in the 6th put up two runs to take the lead. This didn't last long as Plymouth Wayzata bounced right back in the bottom of the inning to tie the game 8 apiece. Plymouth held the Wildcats to no runs in the top of the 7th. With a possibility of ending on the losing side of this walk-off, the Wildcats defense buckled down to go 3-Up, 3-Down in the 7th and 8th inning. In the top of the 8th, the Wildcats scored from 2nd on a close play at the plate to pick up the go ahead run. That is all they would need to end up on top in this exciting 9-8 game!
Set your GPS to Bloomington! Next week will be the week of Bloomington. The Wildcats play at Bloomington Blue on June 19th and at Bloomington Red on June 24. They squeeze the Bloomington Tournament between those games on June 21-23. Based on history, these will be some tough games.