Cats Take Down First-Seeded Sanderson

Panther Creek defeated No. 1 Sanderson to advance to the third round of the state playoffs

Panther Creek defeated Sanderson 4-1 on Friday

David Robertson

Panther Creek defeated Sanderson 4-1 on Friday

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After defeating Garner 4-0 in the first round of the playoffs, the Panther Creek baseball team traveled to Sanderson to face off against the Spartans and their hostile crowd. The Catamounts left Raleigh, Friday night, leaving little doubt in a 4-1 victory over the first-seeded Spartans. The win extended Panther Creek’s current win streak to six, dating back to the regular season, and tying for the Catamounts’ longest win streak this season.

Both the Catamounts and the Spartans started the second round matchup off with a pitching duel as both teams entered the fifth inning with one run apiece. It was not until the fifth inning – when senior Ross Moreau got on base and then senior Jordan Hockaday hit a double for the RBI – that the Catamounts took the 2-1 lead. Shortly after, junior Corey Wall hit a two-RBI single to cement the lead at 4-1.

As well as the Catamounts hit against Sanderson, the pitching was even more impressive; in his first ever playoff game, junior pitcher Jake Wilson (6.1 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER) held the Spartans, who had totaled fifty-eight runs in their last ten games, to just one run. “It was just like any other game in my head,” said Jake when facing top-seeded Sanderson. As the Catamounts move deeper into the playoffs, Wilson knows the capabilities of the batters he will face are only going to increase, but he does not want to let it get to his head. “It’s just game by game; as we advance,

we just have to keep preparing with the same mindset – that’s how you win games.”

— Jake Wilson

Wilson was capped off at 87 pitches through six innings by his coaches. Junior closer Patrick Morton relieved Wilson in the bottom of the seventh inning. Morton sealed the win by mowing down all three batters in order.

With the win, Panther Creek moves on to host Heritage in the third round. Senior pitcher Josh Maciejewski will face a test however, as Heritage averages 11.2 runs per game, including eight games in double digits, and four games with fourteen or more runs. The first pitch is at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 20.


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