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Tomahawk baseball playoff-bound
MARYSVILLE Though Tomahawk victory seemed certain early in the first game of their series against Cascade, a small surge by the Bruins put celebrations on ice for an extra inning.
While designated hitter Alex Austin ran in the game-winning run in the first inning, junior right fielder Levi Cartas batted in the game-ending RBI in the bottom of the sixth as M-P ten-runned Cascade for a final 14-4 score at home April 22.
Cartas batted 4-for-4 with four RBIs in the win, and the junior's play in the leadoff slot has been a comfortable fit for the Tomahawks.
"We've got a lot of speed, so we were trying a lot of guys in that leadoff slot," said M-P coach Kurt Koshelnik. "He's put together quite a few games in a row where he's hit well, so it's a pretty good fit."
Every M-P player who started found home plate at least once, with the Tomahawks leading by as much as 12-1 in the bottom of the third. But the ten-run rule doesn't kick in until the fifth inning and Cascade cut M-P's lead to just nine in the top of the fifth, forcing another Tomahawk at bat.
With weather delays, the April 22 game led off a long stretch of play for the Tommies six games in eight days. While a two-game series against Oak Harbor took place after the Globe went to press, M-P swept Cascade and Arlington over the week, outscoring the two opponents 46-8 over the four games. With a 15-0 win over Arlington April 25, M-P locked up a slot in the district tournament playoffs.
With so many games in so short a span, depth in the Tomahawk bullpen helped keep the team fresh. Seniors Frankie Nelson and John Trimble each started a game in the series against Cascade, while sophomore Brennan Steinbaugh pitched the Tomahawks' 4-3 win over Arlington on April 23, and junior Tyler Holm threw playoff-clinching victory.
While the playoff slots have been secured, the seeding remained up in the air entering the series against Oak Harbor.
The district tournament begins May 3. The Tommies will likely face Wesco South's first or second seed in their tournament opener.