“It was the good, the bad and the ugly.”
That’s how Lincoln County High School baseball coach Raymond Wadsworth described his team’s matchup with The Meadows last Friday in Panaca.
Weather conditions were terrible for the doubleheader, with high winds kicking up dust and making it difficult for both teams.
The first game saw several lead changes in the first four innings before disaster struck the Lynx in the fifth, as the team gave up 14 runs.
“We couldn’t throw a strike, and when we did, they just crushed it,” Wadsworth said. “That whole inning was just a nightmare.”
Lincoln lost the game 18-8.
“After the game, I think everyone was just shocked,” Wadsworth added. “I think Meadows was shocked.”
Between games, Wadsworth said he could see this was a gut check time for his team. “I asked the kids who they wanted to be,” he said. “I asked the seniors to take control.”
It wasn’t looking good early on in the second game with Lincoln spotting Meadows six runs to start. However, senior McClain O’Connor took over pitching duties for the first time this season. O’Connor had to shake off some rust, according to his coach, but was able to improve as the game wore on.
“He fought tooth and nail for us,” Wadsworth said.
Meadows went up 10-9 in the top of the seventh, but the Lynx were able to load the bases in the bottom of the final inning. Then senior Nick Vincent shot one up the line, sending in two runs to win the game.
Vincent had struggled most of the day, but that final at bat should help him forget about that.
“He was flying high, and the kids were all excited,” Wadsworth said.
The coach said winning the game gave his team some much needed momentum as the team prepares for the playoffs. The Lynx have been on the losing end of a couple other close games, so it was good for the team to win this one.
“It was a good character building weekend for us. It was good to have a close game and come out victors,” he said.
The Lynx are 12-7 overall and still at the top of the Division III Southern League with an 11-1 clip. Needles (13-6, 10-2), Lake Mead (13-4, 10-3) and The Meadows (5-6-1, 4-4) follow in the standings. Wadsworth said the top teams in the division are all capable of beating one another, so the playoffs should be interesting.
Lincoln was scheduled to play at White Pine (5-11, 4-6) on Tuesday, but that doubleheader was postponed to this coming Tuesday due to poor weather. The final regular season games will be at Laughlin next Friday.