In a short amount of time, a game, a best-of-three playoff series and the season all got away from Guyer in the top of the sixth inning against Aledo on Friday night.
Before the sixth inning started, Guyer was comfortably ahead of Aledo in Game 2 of the Class 4A Region I area-round series. When the middle of the sixth rolled around, Guyer’s comfortable margin was replaced with a one-run deficit.
Guyer couldn’t overcome the deficit and Aledo picked up a 5-4 comeback victory at Wildcat Field. Aledo picked up the series sweep and eliminated Guyer from the postseason.
“We knew it was going to be tough for us,” Guyer coach Keith Medford said. “We knew they weren’t dead. They’re a very good ballclub.”
Heading into the sixth inning, Guyer led Aledo 4-1 after scoring two runs in the third inning and another two runs in the fourth. The Lady Wildcats took advantage of Aledo starting pitcher Lauren Crane’s struggles to locate a shrinking strike zone and a couple of costly errors.
Aledo scratched out a run in the fifth before the Ladycats mounted a ferocious rally.
After Aledo’s Kori Kizer singled to start the sixth inning, the Ladycats strung together back-to-back doubles to cut Guyer’s lead to 4-3. Haylee Bowden, Aledo’s leadoff batter, stepped up and lined a single sharply up the middle to score two more runs. Bowden’s second single of the contest ended up being the deciding factor in the game.
Up until that point, Guyer senior pitcher Suzette Palmer had been able to maneuver her way out of tough spots. But in the sixth, Aledo’s bats finally caught up to Palmer.
“I think Suzette’s a competitor, and I think she was doing everything she could do to hold on,” Medford said. “They did a really good job of adjusting. Hats off to them. They did some good things.”
Guyer outfielder Stephanie Otto led the team, going 2-for-3 at the plate. Kaitlyn Thomas went 2-for-3 with a key RBI in the fourth inning.
It was the final game for Guyer’s five seniors. After the game, Palmer, Kennedy Been, Megan Washam, Kylie Miyata and Kaitlyn Thomas all posed with Medford in the right-field grass. The five seniors were the last remaining pieces of the 2010 Lady Wildcats squad that reached the Class 4A state semifinals.
Following the game, Medford said he was proud of the team’s effort in what ended up being the final game of the season.
“I’m disappointed in the loss, but I’m not disappointed in my kids at all,” Medford said.
BEN BABY can be reached at 940-566-6869 and via Twitter @Ben_Baby.