• 59°

Wildcats bats spell doom for ‘horns

The best way to describe Marengo Academy’s one-game 7-1 playoff loss to Wilcox Academy Thursday would be to say it just wasn’t their day.

The Wildcats were hot early and jumped out to a big lead to put the Longhorns on their heals the entire game.

Coming into the game, things seemed to be in Marengo’s favor. A coin toss gave them home-field advantage and a 13-3 thumping of the Wildcats a month ago gave them confidence in their ability to take down Wilcox and enter the playoffs as the number two team in their region.

Add in the fact that the Longhorns were seeking revenge for a recent loss to the Wildcats on another off day and all the pieces were in place for Marengo to push forward and regain their midseason swagger at the perfect time.

Unfortunately, Wilcox had different times. Wilcox was hot as soon as they stepped off the bus.

The Wildcats hammered hit after hit in the first three innings and were patient at the plate to draw walks when they needed them most to build a quick 6-0 lead.

On the other side, the Longhorns scattered hits all afternoon, but never seemed to be able to pull the trigger with runners in scoring position. Each time Marengo posted a legitimate threat Wilcox had an answer.

After adding another run in the sixth to make the score 7-0 it appeared Marengo was out of second chances.

But, that is when the Longhorn bats woke up. Robbie Smith got things going for Marengo with a double to left-center. Trey Powell picked him up from there by slapping an RBI single to get the Longhorns on the board.

But, Wildcat pitchers put down the next four Marengo batters in a row to seal the game.

Though his performance was for no decision, Marengo pitcher Josh Dunn had a notable day on the mound. In the final four innings, Dunn held Wilcox to three hits, while striking out three.