'Cats still in playoff hunt

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Newport 12, Mount Si 2

The Knights were looking for revenge after losing a wild one earlier in the season to Mount Si. They found it in a big way last Monday at Bannerwood Park in Bellevue, trouncing the Wildcats' varsity baseball team in six innings due to the 10-run rule.

Newport scored first, but Mount Si, thanks to RBI base hits by Bruce Opsal and Jeremy Bess, took a 2-1 lead into the bottom of the third. Then the wheels fell off for Mount Si, as the Knights scored four runs in the bottom of the third, then added seven more in the fifth and sixth innings. Jay Miller went 4-for-4 to lead the Knights.

Mount Si 3, Cedarcrest 0

The Wildcats returned home Tuesday from the rout on Monday and got a strong pitching performance from Nick Harpel. Harpel shut out the Red Wolves on only three hits over seven innings, striking out eight Cedarcrest hitters in the process.

Harpel was happy with his outing, but credited his teammates with helping him out.

"We had solid defense, [and] we had pretty good hitting today, so all and all I think it was the best outing I've had," Harpel said.

Coach Gary McGregor was also pleased with his pitcher's performance on the mound, saying, "Throwing the ball over the plate, make [Cedarcrest] put it in play - that's part of the game."

Liberty 9,

Mount Si 1

Wednesday's game against Liberty, one of the best teams in the state, was expected to be difficult for Mount Si. Liberty pitcher Joe Short struck out 14 Wildcat hitters en route to the complete-game victory. The only hitter not to strike out was Josh Serrick.

Mount Si pitcher Alex Smart go into trouble early. He walked six Liberty hitters in the first, and the Patriots responded by scoring four runs and not looking back.

Bess scored the lone Mount Si run in the bottom of the fourth on a sacrifice fly by Smart.

One of the stranger moments of the Wildcat season occurred in the top of the second inning, when the game was briefly delayed by a dog that had gotten loose on the field. By then, even the dog couldn't help the Wildcats.

Mount Si 7, Interlake 6

Despite eight Wildcat errors, the team hung on for a critical victory over Interlake in a makeup game from earlier in the year. Bryce Kaestner pitched a complete game, giving up only one earned run while striking out five.

Smart went 3-for-3 with an RBI to lead Mount Si.

McGregor praised his team for refusing to lose.

"I have never been involved in a game with that many mistakes and still come out on top," he said. "Even though we had eight errors in the infield, the kids never hung their heads for too long. They know we are in a battle for that last playoff spot with Bellevue and Interlake, and they overcame the odds to still come out on top."

Mount Si 6, Mercer Island 5

It was another wild game for Mount Si, as the team overcame an Islander rally in the bottom of the seventh inning to get the win in extra innings.

Ian Opsal pitched his first varsity game and went seven innings in the win, while Harpel picked up the save by taking the mound in the eighth.

Josh Serrick hit a home run in the first inning to put the Wildcats up 2-0. They had a 5-1 lead in the seventh before Mercer Island stormed back. Josh Canas hit a home run to open the blitz for the Islanders, and then the team scored three more runs on two separate hits to tie it up.

In the top of the eighth, Bess singled to drive in the go-ahead run for the Wildcats. Harpel came in and despite a two-out error finished off the Islanders. The win kept Mount Si in the playoff race.

Mount Si closes out the season this week with games against Bellevue and Interlake, the two teams that are battling the Wildcats for the last spot in the KingCo Conference tournament.

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