MADISON — Class A No. 3 Hauser and No. 5 Rising Sun were in a pitchers battle for most of Monday’s sectional semifinal.
It was the defensive fielding that was the difference.
The Shiners made the perfect plays on defense, and the Jets committed five errors that led to their season ending with a 4-0 loss.
Hauser finishes the season 17-8. The good news for the Jets is that they are a young team and will return seven of the nine starters in their normal lineup.
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“The future is looking bright, but it will be about all the hard work that we have to put in,” Hauser coach Nate Long said. “I have my pitchers back, and yes, I have a lot of guys coming back. We still have to put in the work and still make the plays. I like the way we are heading. I like the direction we are rolling in, and the future is bright.”
The two guys that Long does lose for next season are seniors Brandon Holt and Evan Shaw.
“Brandon has been my solid lead guy this year and my right fielder,” Long said. “He brings something that a lot of guys don’t have and that’s leadership and being an extended coach. He is going to be hard to replace at the top of the order.
“Evan brings in this toughness. He plays the game harder than anyone that I had ever coached. He tags guys hard, and he is not afraid to run at the catcher to make sure he gets there. It is the kind of mentality like that we are going to miss.”
Rising Sun (17-5) put up a run off Sam Meek in the second inning, and the rally started with a Jets error. The Shiners picked up an additional run in the third from two singles and a sacrifice fly to go ahead 2-0.
The score stayed that way until Rising Sun broke through again in the seventh and tacked on two more insurance runs.
The best chance for Hauser to tie the game came when it was down two in the bottom of the sixth. The Jets had runners on second and third with two out, but the Shiners ended the threat with a strikeout.
“(Rising Sun) made every play out there today, so hats off to them,” Long said. “The best team won out there by making all the plays, and we didn’t, which cost us some runs. They played a great game, and we have areas that we could have improved on today, but you hate having to see it for these seniors and the year that we had.”