The Pequot Lakes Patriots faced an uphill battle from the loser’s bracket as they needed to win three playoff games for a chance to double-dip the unbeaten Staples-Motley Cardinals and win their first Section 6AA title.
The Patriots accomplished the goal of a rematch against the Cardinals as they defeated Minnewaska 2-1 and then downed Holdingford 6-3 and Milaca 13-3 on Tuesday, May 28, to reach the section final against S-M on Thursday, May 30.
Patriots 6, Holdingford 3
In the first game on May 28, Pequot Lakes pushed across two runs in the top of the first on a two-run double by Hannah Zimmerman.
The Patriots added another run in the second on a bases-loaded walk to Jessica Kreitz. The Huskers threatened in the third inning with three singles to score their first run, but the bases were left loaded after a nice leaping catch by infielder Lindzee Johnson.
In the sixth, the Patriots’ Maddie Galligan and Wiebolt singled and Kreitz tripled to make it 5-1. Holdingford added an unearned run in the sixth, but the Patriots would get that back in the seventh on a triple by Zimmerman and a sacrifice fly by Taylor Crocker.
The Huskers’ Haley Huls doubled to start the seventh, but winning pitcher Katie White retired the next three batters for the win.
White allowed nine hits and two earned runs while striking out nine. Alyssa Ohman took the loss.
Wiebolt was 3-for-4, Kreitz was 2-3 with three RBI and Zimmeran was 2-4 with two RBI.
“We had a couple of errors, and left too many runners on,” said Pequot Lakes coach Bret Sergent, “but we made some nice plays too, and got a few big hits with runners in scoring position.”
In the winner’s bracket game, Staples-Motley held on for an 8-6 win over the Milaca Wolves. The meant the Patriots would next face Milaca with the winner advancing to face the Cardinals.
Patriots 13, Milaca 3
Pequot Lakes grabbed a 2-0 lead in the second inning on RBI singles by Crocker and White. But the Wolves rallied for a 3-2 lead in the fourth on two doubles and a Patriot error.
The lead was short-lived as Johnson, Erin Rudbeck and Zimmerman had consecutive hits mixed in with two Milaca errors which resulted in a 5-3 lead for Pequot Lakes.
White retired the Wolves in order in the fifth, and then the Patriots broke the game open with seven runs in the sixth. The big rally was highlighted by a bases-loaded triple by Johnson. Pequot Lakes added three more runs on singles by Rudbeck and Zimmerman, a walk and a throwing error.
The final run scored in the seventh came on a single by Angela Cole and an RBI hit by Becca Langer. Ten different Patriots contributed to the team’s 18-hit attack while White didn’t allow a hit over the final three innings.
Zimmerman was 3-4, Rudbeck 3-5 and Wiebolt, Kreitz, Johnson and Crocker each had two hits.
White allowed three hits, two earned runs while striking out seven to earn the win.