WAC Champs Fall Short in First Round of Playoffs


Tiger Nation/Barcellos

Players anticipate a return to the field despite all the rain.

Jackson Silva and Kayson Welch

The Tigers varsity baseball team finished their regular season off very strong. 

Falling short of the league rival for league champs in 2022, Tiger baseball was determined to make changes.  The Tigers started league off super strong in the first two weeks.  In the past year, the third week of league has been tough, getting swept by Mountain House in 2022.  This year was different, with a freshman being added onto the team, Julian Cazares, pitcher who helped carry the team and improved the Tigers season.  The Tigers tied in the series with Mountain House, which included a shutout from the freshman Cazares.

While staying strong, the Tigers were upset by the third place Ceres team.  This game put the Tigers a game back from first.  Fortunately, the third place Bulldogs also beat Mountain House, which made the Mustangs also 12-2.  Tied for first, this has been one of the best seasons since Covid.  Going into the playoffs, the Tigers were the 14th seed of division 3 playoffs.

On May 9, 2023 the Tigers headed down to Modesto the play Central Catholic in round 1. Once the 14th seed Tigers touchdown onto the #4 seed, Central Catholic they were lock in. They got off ready to roll. They beat the Raiders on their own field. Warm ups were great and they looked ready.

The game started out Tigers hitting first. And the first three batters got out not looking good for the Tigers. Then the California homerun leader and leadoff hitter came up. First at bat and smacked a laser into right center gap looking bad for the Tigers, but then Kayson Welch made an amazing diving play to give the Tigers energy. Then Welch made another play and the freshman Julian walked one batter, then struck out the other to get out the inning. The 2nd inning was basically the same. Then 3rd inning came up and Tigers still could not get on. But for the Raiders, they were working walks and getting a couple hits to score one run in the 3rd. But the Tigers were ready to answer back with Welch who started off with a base hit in the 4th with two outs then the pitcher tried to pick him off but missed the target and Welch advanced to 2nd base. Two outs runner on 2nd Tigers looked to do damage. But then they hit a ground ball to end the inning.

Then it was their turn to hit and the home run leader came up again and hit one over to right field to make the score 2-0. And the Tigers had nothing working rest of game. Then in the 6th inning, the Raiders tagged two more runs to make it 4-0.  Top of the 7th, Welch was up to bat worked a walk to get on. Then next at bat Julian Meja popped the ball out to right field. One out and Tigers chasing four runs. Then Armando Cazares goes down with a strike out. Freshman Julina Cazares works a walk to make it 2 outs runners on second and first. Then they both stole the next pitch to make it runners on 2nd and 3rd with Adrian Mendoza up to bat, looking to put some runs on the board. Then he hit a rock to the short stop who made a play and ended the Tigers season.