Wildcats end season in bi-district play

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The Kennedale Wildcat Baseball team (10-17, 5-5) ended a frustrating season with a playoff loss to the #18 ranked Decatur Eagles (21-8-1, 8-0) last week, but they didn?t go down without a fight. {{more:[read more]}}In a best of three series, the Wildcats lost both games with an identical 7-5 score and in dramatic fashion.
keeping the streak alive at 21 …
The Wildcats did keep their streak alive by making the playoffs for 21st year. This was a young team in terms of on the field experience, returning a single starter off of last year team. The inexperienced Cats played in a competitive district, finishing in a tie for third this year.
Three of the four district team in the playoffs won their bi-district games this last week. District champ Godley entered the playoffs ranked #13 in Class 4A.
Game 1 (L) 7-5
Decatur took an early lead in first game action with one run in the 1st and 4 in the 2nd. The Eagles added two more runs to make it 7-0 in the bottom of the 5th when they began to pack their bags.
Kennedale, having none of that, put up 2 runs in the 6th and put on their rally caps in the 7th with hits from their first three batters – singles from {{t2:Austin Crabtree: }} (So), Aaron Herrera (So) and Brayden Sewell (Jr) and then Cody Bossaller (Sr) walked, sending home Crabtree.
7th inning rally …
The Wildcats had the bases loaded with the tying run at the plate and no outs. Kennedale got a single from Ethan Wood (So) scoring Herrera and the score was 7-4. But, after Bossaller was thrown out at second and Jordan Pough (Sr) struck out, the Cats were suddenly down to one out.
Kennedale responded with a single from {{t2:Bryce Hackett: }} (So) scoring Sewell followed by a single from Luke Michener (So) to keep the rally alive. It died quickly afterwards when Cole Carruthers (Jr) grounded out leaving the bases loaded. But, it gave Decatur a real scare with the Cats’ 6 hits and foretold the events in Game 2.
The Cats did out hit the Eagles 11-9 thanks to the 7th inning run but committed 4 errors to none for Decatur. Kennedale left 9 runners on base.

Coming up big for the Wildcats in the game was {{t2:Luke Michener: }} (So) who was 3 for 4 at the plate doubling in the sixth and singling in the second and seventh innings. {{t2:Cody Bossaler: }} (Sr) was 2 for 3 with an RBI. Ethan Wood and Bryce Hackett both had an RBI along with a hits by Aaron Herrera, {{t2:Jordan Pough: }} (Sr), Brayden Sewell and Austin Crabtree.

{{t2:Brayden Sewell: }} (Jr) got the loss for Kennedale allowing 7 runs on 7 hits in 5 innings. He faced 27 batters throwing 79 pitches and recording 41 strikes, 3 walks and got 14 fly/ground outs. {{t2:Tyler Aguilar: }} (So) came in as relief and faced 5 batters allowing 2 hits, throwing 13 strikes in 19 throws with one strikeout and no walks.

Game 2 (L) 7-5
Back home in Kennedale, the game played out like the night before. Kennedale spotted Decatur 6 runs in the first two endings and it was 7-0 before the Cats put up three runs in the bottom of the 5th on singles by Carruthers, Crabtree, Herrera and a double by Bossaller.
another late game rally …

In the 6th Kennedale left two on base despite a double by Pough. But, once again the Cats mounted a rally in the bottom of the 7th with one on (Herrera single) and two out. Ethan Wood walked and Pough singled to the shortstop to load the bases and Herrera scored on the only error of the game to make the score 7-4. Hackett on a 3-2 count singled to LF, scoring courtesy runner {{t2:AJ Harrell: }} (Sr) to bring the Cats within 2 runs, 7-5. Then with the winning run at the plate, {{t2:Brandon Jones: }} (So), Decatur changed pitchers for the third time and on a 1-1 call, Jones grounded out to the pitcher. Kennedale lost the game and the series but hadn?t given up, saying good things about the players, coaches and next year.

{{t2:Aaron Herrera: }} (So) paced the Wildcats at the plate. Herrera went 3-4, drove in one and scored two runs. He singled in the first, fifth, and seventh innings. Both Pough and Bossaller doubled with Bossaller getting 2 RBIs and Pough with 2 hits. Austin Crabtree went 2 for 3 with 1 run scored. Hackett recorded one RBI with one hit. {{t2:Cole Carruthers: }} (Jr) had 1 run and a hit and Brayden Sewell got single.

Jordan Pough pitched 1.2 innings facing 15 batters throwing 44 pitches with 22 strikes allowing 6 hits. Tyler Aguilar pitched the next 1.1 innings facing 5 batters with 20 throws and 11 strikes and one strike out, allowing 1 hit and no runs. {{t2:Ethan Wood: }} (So) finished the game pitching 4 innings, facing 15 batters, throwing 48 pitches with 26 strikes and allowing 1 run on 4 hits.
22 hits over two games …
Kennedale did match Decatur hit for hit with 11 each and played an error free game. For the series the Cats had 22 hits against a solid team who had returned nine starters, all juniors and seniors this year with seven all-district players including the district MVP.

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