Sports

Wildcats live the dream at Safeco

Mount Si’s Rossco Castagno swings at a Cody Hebner pitch in the first inning of Saturday’s game against Auburn Mountainview at Safeco Field. Castagno singled in this at-bat, and wound up with three hits on the day in the 2-1 loss for the Wildcats. - Dan Catchpole / Snoqualmie Valley Record
Mount Si’s Rossco Castagno swings at a Cody Hebner pitch in the first inning of Saturday’s game against Auburn Mountainview at Safeco Field. Castagno singled in this at-bat, and wound up with three hits on the day in the 2-1 loss for the Wildcats.
— image credit: Dan Catchpole / Snoqualmie Valley Record

Playing on the same diamond as their major league idols, the Mount Si baseball team realized a dream that many players have had since they were little boys.

The team showed that they deserved to live the dream, in an exciting performance Saturday, April 11, at Safeco Field in Seattle.

The ‘Cats played well in front of what may have been the largest Mount Si baseball crowd in memory, falling 2-1 to Auburn Mountainview. That loss, however, won’t diminish the memories for players.

“This is an amazing experience,” said Mount Si player Danny Cavanaugh. “I’ve never been on a major league baseball field before. From the moment I was born, I’ve wanted to be a major league baseball player. This experience right here just makes me want to play even more.”

“I think we should do this every year,” he added.

The Lions struck in the first inning, as Cody Hebner, who started the game on the mound for Auburn Mountainview and shut down the Wildcat hitters. He singled, scoring Michael Winters.

Mount Si could not get much going until the fourth inning, when Wildcats Taylor Campbell, Zack Robinson and Michael Davenport all singled with one out to load the bases against Lions reliever Brandon Williams. With the ‘Cats threatening, Williams was able to get Tim Proudfoot to fly out in foul territory in front of the Mount Si dugout, then the junior struck out Zach Guyer to extinguish the threat.

Williams then turned his attention from his arm to his bat in the bottom of the frame, and hit a solo home run which squeaked over the right center field fence off of Wildcat reliever Alex Hiebert to give Auburn a 2-0 lead. In the sixth, Mount Si finally got on the scoreboard, with a Proudfoot single, which scored Cavanaugh.

The Wildcats were not able to muster anything after that, and the Lions held on despite getting only five hits.

Rossco Castagno had three hits to lead the Wildcats.

Two members of Mount Si’s softball team, Melissa Webster and Brielle Buhner, also participated as ball girls. Buhner, who spent many days around Safeco as a child when her dad, Jay, played for the Mariners, was thrilled.

“It’s exciting to be back,” she said. “I really haven’t been back here in a while, or on the field at least, so it’s fun. It’s like my second home.”

Mount Si made sure to get each player an at-bat or a half-inning defensively.

“You get an opportunity like this and you definitely want to take full advantage of it,” said Wildcat assistant coach Bill Lanzer.

Frank Tassara, father of injured pitcher Frankie, said he was pleased with the community efforts to help the team.

To get the opportunity to play, Mount Si boosters had to sell a set number of Mariners tickets. To be invited back next year, they have to sell a similar number of tickets for an upcoming game.

In other action last week, Mount Si swept a pair of games against Interlake, outscoring the Saints 26-6 in the two games. Scores were 14-1 last Tuesday, April 7 and 12-5 last Thursday, April 9.

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