MOLALLA, Ore. - Mac-Hi came up two runs short here Saturday night in its attempt to reach the Oregon Class 4A baseball playoff round of 16.
Host Molalla built a 7-2 lead after four innings and withstood a late Pioneers' rally for a 7-5, play-in victory. Mac-Hi's season ended with an overall mark of 11-13.
The Pioneers sliced an early four-run deficit in half with a pair of runs in the third inning. The tallies were registered on a double into the left-center field gap by Troy Kessler.
Patrick Sheets brought Mac-Hi within four, 7-3, with an RBI double in the fifth inning. The two-bagger was one of two that Sheets recorded in the game.
The Pioneers scored twice in the seventh. A passed ball resulted in the first run and Kessler chased the other home on a sacrifice fly.
11 regular-season wins including three Greater Oregon League triumphs, one of which came against powerhouse Baker, were among the 2012 highlights for the Mac-Hi baseball program, according to head coach Mike Garcia.
"Each year we want to be able to get better," Garcia said. "This is one of the steps we want to take forward. The kids did a fine job this year."
Saturday's game was the last for Mac-Hi seniors Sheets, Kessler, Jake Morris, Kevin Cuellar, Willie McCoy, and Taylor Hodgen.
"The seniors should feel good about themselves," Garcia said. "They've set a benchmark for next year's team and teams that follow them."
Molalla 7, Mac-Hi 5
Mac-Hi 002 010 2 - 5 5 3
Molalla 130 300 X - 7 4 2
Shuler and McCoy; Stith, Kidwell (7) and Pfau.
HR - none.
Hits - Mac-Hi: Sheets 2, Shuler, Kessler, McCoy; Molalla: Stith 2, Potter, Weishoff.