ROUND ROCK — In the past two seasons, the Aledo baseball team has made unexpected runs to the UIL state tournament.
The first came last year, when the Bearcats — a third-place team in district — pitched their way to a Class 4A championship.
And then there was this year. After graduating 16 players, including its two state-tournament starting pitchers, Aledo beat state-ranked Fort Worth Arlington Heights to reach the semifinals.
But their mojo finally ran out.
Against Georgetown on Thursday, the Bearcats gave up 10 hits, committed four errors and lost 8-2 in the Class 5A semifinals at Dell Diamond.
Aledo tied the Eagles 1-1 in the second inning on an RBI single by Carter Windes. But from there, the Bearcats left six runners on base and could only manage a sacrifice fly RBI in the seventh inning.
“Last year was just one of those magical-type deals,” said Aledo coach Chad Barry, whose team ended with a 24-14 record. “And I don’t think anybody expected us to do it again this year. They continued to get better and better each week, and they believed in each other.”
Georgetown (27-12) will play Prosper (34-3) in the 5A championship game at 7 p.m. Friday.
Aledo missed its chance at back-to-back titles with a string of missed opportunities and misplays in the field.
Tj Raguse put Georgetown up 1-0 in the first after tripling to the gap in left-center field. George Janca drove home Raguse with help from a fielding error on a ground out.
The Eagles scored again in the second, when Justin McGinnity singled home Blake Anderson. Wyatt Smith started the inning by reaching on another error.
In the third, Raguse again started the offense with a single. He would then score on a triple by Janca, who came home on a throwing error.
At that point, Georgetown led 4-1, and Aledo kept it that way until the Eagles singled twice with two outs in the sixth and loaded the bases with a walk, setting the table for Parker Padlock, whose three-run double extended the lead to 7-1. Georgetown added another RBI single by Wyatt Smith for its final run of the game.
Wade Raburn flew out to left field in the seventh to score the final run for the Bearcats.