The Mansfield baseball team made quick work of Temple in its bi-district playoff series last week, defeating the Wildcats in two straight games to advance to the area round where it will face Coppell, which downed Irving Nimitz in a bi-district series that went three games last weekend.
Coach Gary Vaughan said that his team played well in its series against the Wildcats and said it was really good to see that everything was firing on all cylinders.
“I thought we played pretty well,” Vaughan said. “At Temple, we may have come out a little bit edgy and everything, but when we got back to Mansfield, we settled into our game pretty quick and competed well.”
Reid Petty pitched a two-hit shut out in the Tigers first game against Temple, and Austin Tidwell doubled as Mansfield won 5-0 in Temple.
In Game 2, the Tigers defeated Temple 11-1 to close out the series, and Vaughan said he had great performances from a couple of his guys.
“We've had good pitching all the way around,” Vaughan said. “We've had the luxury of throwing three or four guys that have all done an outstanding job on the mound. Of course, Petty is our big horse. And then Justin Vistacion, our short stop, has had a really good series.”
Vaughan said in an earlier interview that he wanted his team to be peaking at the right time and said that he has been impressed with his team's effort so far as the playoffs get underway.
“The farther you get, the higher level of competition you face,” Vaughan said. “I just want to see us get in there and stay within our game. We play good defense, and if we can keep playing good defense and get good pitching, we fee like we'll be in games late in the game and have a chance to win.”
Vaughan said on Saturday before the conclusion of the Coppell-Nimitz series that regardless of who his team faces in the area round this coming week, he knows Mansfield will definitely have its work cut out for it.
“We played Nimitz, and I know that coach Mendoza does a terrific job over there,” Vaughan said. “He's really got them rolling now. With Coppell, they always have good players. They always compete at a high level and they swing the bat.”
Mansfield will play Coppell at a time and location to be determined. See www.dfwvarsity.com for updates.