Mansfield Sports

April 21, 2014

Tigers enter final week focused on winning district

Mansfield Baseball Coach Gary Vaughan thinks the district is so tough that all its playoff teams might manage to make a run of some kind.

The Mansfield baseball team remained atop the District 7-5A standings on Friday night with a 6-0 victory over a Cedar Hill and now has a district championship within its sights.

Mansfield played DeSoto on Tuesday night after the press deadline and will travel to South Grand Prairie at 7 p.m. on Friday to wrap up the regular season.

“South Grand Prairie is always tough,” coach Gary Vaughan said. “They're as feisty a baseball club as you will find around here. We always have a battle with them. They are very well coached over there, and they will be ready. They are fighting to get into the playoffs, so they are going to be prepared for us.”

Vaughan said that the victory over Cedar Hill on Friday night was special for a couple of reasons.

“The biggest thing was that it was senior recognition night, so we had a lot of festivities going on,” Vaughan said. “Sometimes, you're not sure how focused they will be, but they were extremely focused. We had our number one pitcher, Reid Petty, on the mound, and he had one of the best games he's pitched all year long.

“With him on the mound, and with us playing as good a defense as we have been here lately, I knew we had a good chance to beat them.”

Petty threw a one-hit shut out and homered for the Tigers in the game against Cedar Hill.

As the postseason looms in the very near future, Vaughan said that with the level of competition his team has faced in District 7-5A this season, he believes his team has been well-prepared for the playoffs.

“We've got some real good teams in our district,” Vaughan said. “Some very good programs that play hard every week. I think that any one of our top three or even top four have a chance to advance a little ways.”

Vaughan said that he does not have any real serious concerns moving forward to the playoffs, but said there are a couple of things he wants to make sure his team remembers to do.

“One area of concern is to finish up this next week and stay focused,” Vaughan said. “Then we just want to be ready and be excited for the postseason. The playoffs are like gravy — they're extra, and they are always exciting. Hopefully, we can continue rolling and play as well as we have and see what we can do.”

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