Nine Mariners take on loaded teams in Palmer
By Adrian Lysenko
The M’s opened with a 1-10 loss to the Dimond Lynx. The Lynx went on to take the State title.
“That first game put us in a hard spot,” said Gilbert. “We had to work pretty hard just to get there.”
And taking only nine team members to the tourney didn’t help. With the high school season pushing so far into the summer, several players were unable to make the trip due to their commitment to summer jobs.
“The score didn’t reflect what happened,” Gilbert said. “We got runners on, but we just couldn’t get them in.”
The next game of the tourney was a 3-15 loss to West Valley. The loss took the M’s out of the tournament, despite a solid pitching effort from senior Justin Frink.
Gilbert said the problems came with a few Mariner errors on the field, as well as strong West Valley bats.
“(West Valley) didn’t just hit the ball, they hit it hard,” Gilbert said. “Our boys did a great job, just to get to state was a huge accomplishment. I’m very proud of them.”
With only three seniors leaving the team, the future of Mariner baseball looks bright. Gilbert said it also helped that many of the younger players got some good experience in.
“They stepped up and played hardball at the varsity level,” Gilbert said. “We very easily could have a fairly strong team next year.”
Senior Josh Gilbert was named to the first team, all-conference, while Justin Frink and Vance Wolford were named to the second team. Kevin Rowe received an honorable mention.
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