'Cats title bid upended

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After a Cinderalla run at the Sea-King tournament, the Mount Si Wildcats found some heavy competition from other regions at the state softball 3A tournament. The result was a three-game run that saw the Wildcats bid for a state title dashed early.

Washougal Panthers 5,

Mount Si Wildcats 1

It took just one hit to end the Mount Si's dream of a state title.

It was a tough way to open the 3A state fastpitch tournament in Tacoma Friday, May 30. A good pitcher's duel was broken open in the top of the fifth inning, only it was the opposing Washougal Panthers who got the big hit. Panthers senior outfielder Ashley Billmyer hit a triple to center field off of Wildcat freshman starting pitcher Kandis Clesson that broke a 1-1 tie and put the Panthers in the lead to stay.

"Wish we could have that pitch back. We kind of hung a fastball and [Billmyer] jumped all over it," said Mount Si coach Larry White. "We didn't play Wildcat softball. We made a lot of mistakes [and] they're a very aggressive team. I think our youth showed a little bit. A little bit of nerves were hanging out there on everybody's sleeves. Hopefully we'll be able to rebound and relax a little bit now after getting that first game under our belts."

In front of a large supportive audience that consisted of parents, students, administrators, and for a time, members of Centralia and Eastlake's softball teams, the Wildcats got on the board first in the bottom of the second inning when Clesson picked up a single. She was replaced by a courtesy runner who ultimately scored on a blown double steal to put Mount Si up 1-0.

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