The Robert F. Munroe Bobcats enjoyed something they were unable to accomplish last season: a 3-0 week.
In doing so, the team defeated the Florida State University School (Florida High) and Wakulla on consecutive nights before besting FAMU in their first district game.
“We’re happy to have a week like this,” said Bobcat head coach Jayme Williams. “Florida High and Wakulla were two very tough teams. Both of those teams’ pitching stymied us at the plate to a certain extent, but we got some timely hits to go along with solid pitching. Our players are really showing some signs of maturing as a team.”
On Monday, Feb. 24, the Bobcats found themselves behind the visiting Seminoles 6-3 going into the bottom of the sixth before erupting for eight runs and the final margin of 11-6.
“They had us on the ropes until the sixth, and we were able to get some runners on and chase their starter,” said Williams. “Then we started hitting the ball like we’ve been doing. What I’m most proud of is that we never panicked. We stayed calm and finally took advantage of our opportunities when they came.”
Starting pitcher Casey Mathers weathered the early storm for the complete game victory, yielding eight hits and striking out four. At the plate, the Bobcats totaled nine hits and were led by Myles Edwards, Stephen Miller and Nolan Haire, with two each.
Mathers, helping his own cause, drove in three runs and Will Harris had an RBI single to begin the scoring in the sixth.
The following evening, the Bobcats traveled to Wakulla, besting their hosts 5-3 in a game that featured good pitching by both teams.
“Wakulla threw six guys, and they really kept us off balance at the plate,” said Williams. “We were able to counter with two good performances from starter Nolan Haire and reliever Stephen Miller.”
Haire went 5-1/3, scattering four hits and yielding three runs. Miller pitched the final 1-2/3 for the save. Offensively, the Bobcats could only muster five hits, but each pushed a run across the plate.
“Our production was down, but we were really efficient,” said Williams. “For each hit to give us a run in a tight game like this was pretty big.”
Bo Bailey, Bradley Klees, Haire, Will Harris and Johnny Walkup each had a hit and an RBI to pace the Bobcat offense.
“We had four errors in the game, which is usually not good, but we were able to overcome them and play pretty solid defense otherwise,” said Williams.
On Thursday, the Bobcats won their initial district game against FAMU in a game shortened by the mercy rule.
“FAMU was very young, but they’ve got some great kids who battled until the end,” said Williams. “We hit the ball and scored some runs and our two pitchers each got a couple of innings’ work. We’ve got a big district game next week at home against Aucilla, so hopefully we’ll keep the momentum going.”
Game time for the Aucilla match-up was 6 p.m. March 4 at Bradford May Field.