OMAHA – The top-ranked Waverly Viking baseball team saw their season come to an end with a 7-6 loss to the Bennington Badgers on May 15 at Werner Park in Papillion.
Prior to playing the Badgers the Vikings kept their season alive with an 11-6 win over the Elkhorn Antlers on May 14.
The Vikings scored four runs in the top of the sixth inning to break open a close game.
The Vikings led 6-2 going into the bottom of the fourth inning, but the Antlers scored four runs to tie the game six.
Waverly scored four in the top of the sixth inning and added one more in the seventh to pull away for the five-run win, ending the Antlers season.
The Vikings pounded out 10 base hits and were led at the plate by Jay Adams, Nolan Brown and Easton Hovelsrud.
Adams singled twice and scored two runs, Brown drilled two doubles, walked twice and drove in three runs and Hovelsrud added a double and drove in three runs.
Starter Maverick Wylder struggled locating his pitches and allowed hits runs, four walks and six runs over four innings. Brown relieved Wylder and earned the win in relief, working three scoreless innings and striking out five.
The win kept the Vikings alive and set up Wednesday’s showdown with the Badgers, the lone unbeaten left in the state tournament.
The game with the Badgers was a back-and-forth affair featuring four ties and six lead changes.
The Badgers were able to close out the Vikings with a run in the bottom of the seventh inning.
The game was tied at two at the end of two innings, three at the end of three innings and four at the end of the fourth inning.
Bennington scored two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to take a 6-4 lead, only to see the Vikings tie the score at six with two runs in the top of the seventh inning.
The Vikings evened the score in their last at bat on run scoring base hits from Brown and Treyton Kozal.
The Badgers scored the game-winner on an RBI single from Tyler LeClair off of Waverly reliever Ian Lanik.
Treyton Kozal finished with a double and triple at the plate, scored two runs and drove in a run for the Vikings.
Adams drove in two runs with a single and Brown and Ian Steinmeyer each finished with two base hits apiece.
Rhett Jordon, Adams and Lanik struggled against a good Badger line-up allowing 15 hits and seven runs.
The Vikings season ended with a record of 21-7.