The Lipan Indians wrapped up what is believed to have been the school’s most successful baseball season ever Saturday, dropping a best-of-three Class A playoff series to Chico in Jacksboro.
The Dragons won the first game on Friday, 12-2. The Indians bounced back to level the series with an 11-10 victory Saturday. In the deciding game, also Saturday, the teams were tied 6-6 going into the bottom of the fifth when the Dragons scored 10 runs.
“I’m very pround of our kids,” said Lipan coach and athletic director Mike Permenter, who is also the high school principal. “They could have shut down when they lost the first game. I’m tickled to death with the way they fought back.”
Permenter said it was the first baseball playoff appearance for the 10-7 Indians since 2006. He said he believes Saturday’s win was the school’s first-ever playoff victory.
Chico had been limited to five hits in the first four frames of the third game, but the first six batters in the fifth reached on base hits.
Permenter said that the Chico hitters were not pounding the ball in the 10-run inning, but had a number of hits that just fell in the right place.
“The first four batters did not hit the ball out of the infield,” Permenter said. “Chico had a lot of speed. They’re a good baseball team, and they kind of had some seeing-eye singles.
“Sometimes the baseball bounces funny ways. We just didn’t get anything going our way in the fifth inning. It started bleeding, and we couldn’t stop the bleeding.”
Lipan freshman Lance Ferguson drove in two runs and was 1-for-3 at the plate in Friday’s game.
In Saturday’s win, Ferguson was the winning pitcher in what was his only start of the season on the mound. Ferguson had three RBIs, swatting a home run and a ground-rule double.
Also, Kyle Mercer drove in a pair of runs and was 2-for 4. Brady Nelson earned a save.
For Lipan in the final game, Trevor Hedeman had a triple and drove in two runs, going 2-for-3. Mercer was 2-for-3 with an RBI and Ty Mills drove in a run and was 1-for 2.
Permenter said that Chico next will take on top-ranked Bosqueville in the area round.
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Class A bidistrict baseball
Chico 404 04 – 12
Lipan 002 00 – 2
LP – Colby Clinton (8-1).
Lipan leading hitters – Lance Ferguson 1-3, 2 RBI.
Lipan 031 141 1 – 11
Chico 140 202 1 – 10
WP – Lance Ferguson (1-0).
Save – Brady Nelson.
Lipan leading hitters – Lance Ferguson 2-3, home run, ground-rule double, 3 RBI; Kyle Mercer 2-4, 2 RBI.
Lipan 210 21 – 6
Chico 222 0(10) – 16
Lipan leading hitters – Trevor Hedeman 2-3, triple, 2 RBI; Kyle Mercer 2-3, 1 RBI; Ty Mills 1-2, 1 RBI.