Inexperience hurts Jags in state tourney



By Michael Kinney

Sports Editor

In the program's first ever trip to the state tournament, Westmoore had the good fortune to open up against a team it had played before. The bad part was it was Moore High, a squad that had beaten the Jaguars twice in the regular season.

WMH was shut out 3-0 in a game that highlighted the inexperience of the Jags at Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City Thursday.

"I think they played a little tight and tentative," said Jags coach Steve Schwarz.

It was the fourth time this season the two teams have taken the same field, with the Lions winning three.

Katie Lynn earned the win by holding the Jaguars to four hits and fanning five. It was her 24 victory of the season.

"Katie pitched a great game," MHS coach Robert Wakefield said. "She gave up two hits of her glove. But I think only one hit got out ofthe infield. She had good location."

MHS jumped out front early when Dani Dobbs knocked in Sydney Garcia with a first inning sacrifice fly off Kaci Quintero. They added two more runs in the fourth after the WHM defense committed two errors.

"Once we settled down we played good," Schwarz said. "But we gave up three unearned runs. We both four hits. If ours gets through, we might have tied it back up."

WMH had once chance to tie the game in the bottom of the sixth, with two runners on and two outs. But Lynn got the batter to flyout.

To keep its tournament hopes alive the Jags had to beat Owasso in an elimination game Thursday night. Unfortunately for them they came into the elimination game with their heads still on the earlier defeat to MHS and it cost them as they fell 4-3.

The Rams posted two runs off fielding mistakes in the first inning and WMH was playing catch-up the rest of the evening.

But according to the coaching staff, those mistakes may have been on the umpire's side as he called a runner safe when it looked like the Jags first baseman had stepped on the bag first.

"Without getting too much into it, there were two blown calls and he wouldn't even ask the guy behind the plate for help," Schwarz said. "And the guy behind the plate said she was on the bag. And he wouldn't go with it. That's just the breaks of the game. You have to deal with umpires just like you do with errors."

While Schwarz didn't say the calls cost his team the game, he was not entirely happy with the officiating. Yet, it was still up to his squad to handle the adversity and pull through it.

"I thought some of them played good, some of them just weren't prepared," Schwarz said. "They just let it get to them. Those first two runs were questionable calls but if we would have been back at the bag at first base, then we would have done our job. Those two runs cost us or otherwise we win 3-2."

Kat Tims pitched a solid game for the Jags, but was unable to pick the victory in her final fastpitch game for Westmoore. The senior has been the heart of the team since her arrival, which was why Schwarz may have left her on the mound in the crucial seventh inning in which he gave up the game-winnng run.

"You can always second guess yourself," Schwarz said. "They got two little squibbers. And then I took her out. That's how it goes. She has battled for us all year. We were going to stick with her."

Despite the 0-2 mark in the tournament, Schwarz said his team had a great season. And with the Jags only losing two seniors from this squad, they have a chance to make it back next season.

But they will have to learn from this year first.

"I think they will learn not to take state for granted," Schwarz said. "They got here. But they need to play with intensity and always know what your doing. It's just like you're here so lets stand around for a couple of them. Then a couple of them played so dang hard you feel sorry for them. But we had a great season. First time to state. 27 wins. Couldn't be more proud of this team.

"Just wish it would have ended a little better."

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