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Suicide Squeeze Play Ends PCM’s Season in Substate Finals

PCM put the first run on the board in the second inning and held the lead until the bottom of the seventh inning, but a scrappy Ogden squad refused to let their season slip away in a 6-5 come-from behind win Tuesday night in the Class 2A Substate Finals in West Des Moines.

With one out in the bottom of the seventh and runners on second and third, the Bulldogs executed a suicide squeeze bunt play, and the subsequent flip by Mustangs’ pitcher Joel Wiggins floated over catcher Nate VandeWall’s head and all the way to the backstop, allowing Ogden to plate the tying and game-winning runs in walk-off fashion. For much of the night, though, it looked like it would be PCM that would find themselves back at the State Tournament, as the Mustangs bolted out to a 5-0 lead by the bottom of the fourth that left the team feeling good about their prospects to advance.

“We were real confident in the dugout [at that point], and our guys are confident all the time. When they [Ogden] got those four runs and got back in the game, it put some more pressure on us, but we responded well to it,” said PCM head coach Shawn Hudnut. “Unfortunately, there at the end when we needed to make a play, it didn’t come through for us. It’s unfortunate, but I couldn’t be more proud of how our guys played.”

Wiggins took the loss on the mound, pitching the final 2 ⅔ innings in which he allowed two hits and two walks and struck out five Bulldog batters. Alex DeWitte notched seven strikeouts as the starter for the Mustangs. DeWitte helped his cause at the plate as well, pushing home two runs on a double in the fourth inning; while teammate Bo Clymer matched the feat by tallying two RBIs on a double in the third inning.

The loss ends PCM’s season at 21-11 overall.