116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CARROLL — The end of the season didn’t hit Lisbon Coach John Tesensky in quite the same way.
The Lions’ season came to a close Monday, but he wasn’t as emotional as he would be wishing farewell to seniors. There are none on the roster this season, so the prospects for next season are promising after the 9-3 loss to second-seeded Council Bluffs St. Albert in a Class 1A baseball quarterfinal at Merchants Park.
“It stinks in the moment when you’re losing and not moving on,” Tesensky said. “I’m happy because we have a lot of good baseball ahead of us. If they continue to work hard again, I feel we should be in good shape to make another deep run to (state).”
The Lions finished 25-14 and surpassed each of the last two seasons. They went from first-round postseason exits to district and substate champions, making the school’s eighth state appearance and first since a 2018 runner-up performance.
“I’m excited for next year,” Lisbon’s Hunter Clark said. “It stings right now, but we’ll remember this feeling. We’ll be back next year. We’ll stay in the cages, getting better. We just have to clean some stuff up and keep getting better.”
Lisbon stood toe-to-toe with the Falcons early. Tyson Scott singled to lead off the game and scored on a wild pitch for the Lions’ 1-0 lead. They added another in the second when Alex Bock scored on a Dillon Brayton fielder’s choice, tying the game at 2-2.
“Our kids battled,” Tesensky said. “They hit the ball and made plays when they needed.
“I was real happy with how we responded. Up until the sixth inning when they scored four runs, I thought we were in that game. It was close.”
Tyson Scott doubled and scored in the fourth and that was the final run for the Lions. Eric Matthai and Cy Patterson held them scoreless the last three innings. Lisbon only managed two hits against the two relievers.
“We fought back,” said Scott, who went 3-for-3. “They threw a new pitcher and we couldn’t do much. They made plays when they wanted to.”
The Falcons (33-8) iced the game with four runs in the bottom of the sixth. Jaxson Lehnen and Dan McGrath had two-run singles to help St. Albert pull away.
Brenden Monahan delivered repeatedly for the Falcons. He had hits in each of his first three at-bats, including two doubles.
Monahan was crucial in building early leads, hitting a two-run double in the first for a 2-1 advantage. He added an RBI single in the third and scored on a wild pitch for a 4-2 edge.
“We saw some special things from him as a freshman,” St. Albert Coach Duncan Patterson said of the sophomore Monahan. “We knew he was going to come on and he has come on strong. He’s going to be a good player.”
Clark said the Lions have a lot to prove this year. They have plenty to build on this season, starting the season unranked and finishing as the No. 7 seed at state.
“We accomplished a lot,” Scott said. “I think we surprised a lot of people.”