CASCADE — Monday night’s game featured some of the best teams in Class 2A, and everybody in attendance expected a tight contest.
They just didn’t expect it to be that tight.
It took 11 innings of play, but No. 10 Regina (15-6) outlasted No. 3 Cascade (16-3), 1-0, on the road.
“That was a hard-fought battle,” Regina Coach Jeff Pacha said. “That was a good one to get... It was an overall team effort. That’s a really good team. It just kind of seemed like who wanted to manufacture (a run) first.”
Regina pitcher Ryne Schooley gave it his best shot to close out the Cougars. Through the first six innings of the game, the junior was working a no-hitter. Then he made it out of the seventh inning without giving up a hit.
“He had his good stuff tonight,” Pacha said. “The ball was rolling out of his hand. When he’s rolling like that, he’s pretty tough to beat. He can command multiple pitches. He can go in and out. I wish we could have got him (the win), so it could be official.”
There was a problem, though. Regina couldn’t get much going, either. The Regals had just two hits themselves, and couldn’t get a runner in scoring position.
The eighth inning came and went. Nothing changed. Regina tried again in the ninth, but no luck.
Finally, the Cougars’ luck turned. They picked up three consecutive walks to load the bases with no outs. But third baseman Mitchell Gahan caught two line drives and grabbed a force out to singlehandedly end the inning.
So they went to 10. Then to 11.
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Finally, with runners on first and second base, Regina second baseman Nick Brandt drilled a single to centerfield to put the Regals on the board. Then, freshman pitcher Alex Meister closed out the bottom of the inning.
“It boiled down to having an approach and being able to manufacture a run,” Pacha said. “It was a team effort. We used just about every on the bench. I’m really glad we came out of here with a win.”
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