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April 1, 2023

Jags baseball bumped from playoffs

A wild roller coaster ride finally came to an end last week for
the Windsor Jags varsity baseball squad as they fell to Montgomery,
8-1, in the first round of the North Coast Section 3A playoffs. The
loss evened the Jags¹ season mark at 9-9.
Windsor came into the playoff tournament as the seventh-seeded
team and hoping to make some noise against the second-seeded
Vikings, but Montgomery pitcher Jon Colgan had other plans. The
Vikings hurler was nearly flawless after surviving a rough start,
yielding just three hits and one run, but allowed nothing after the
second inning.
The Jags sent hard-throwing junior hurler Joe Van Cleave to the
hill for the May 24 clash, a start he earned with a string of
bulldog efforts throughout the season. Windsor had Colgan on the
ropes in the top of the second when they loaded the bases with hits
from David Paulsen, Joe Mauney and Van Cleave, but managed just one
run in the inning to grab a 1-0 lead.
Montgomery took advantage of a rare bout of control problems
from Van Cleave in the bottom of the second inning, as the Windsor
ace hit three consecutive batters and walked a pair, putting the
Vikings up 2-1. Montgomery plated another pair of runs in the third
inning and broke it wide open in the fourth with five hits,
including three straight doubles to score four runs, giving Colgan
all the runs he¹d need in the game. Windsor didn¹t get another hit
after the second inning and went quietly, 8-1.
Van Cleave took his fifth loss of the season for Windsor, as
Colgan went the distance to notch the win. Paulsen, Van Cleave and
Mauney had the only hits in the game for Windsor.
Although the loss was disappointing, the playoff game validated
a successful season for the Jags. The wild ride included early
struggles due to inactivity because of all the rain, but the team
caught fire to win five of it last seven league games to qualify
for the playoffs. A key factor in the team¹s resurgence was a
powerful hitting attack that was among the best in the SCL.
³Obviously, the loss to Montgomery hurt, but it was a successful
year for us,² Windsor coach Barney Kaufman said. ³We definitely
came together as a team as the season went along, especially with
our bats. After the first few games in league, we were hitting
around .200, and we wound up with a team batting average of
Wednesday¹s playoff game represented Windsor¹s first post-season
appearance since 2003, when they fell to San Marin in the NCS
2A-title game held at the Oakland Coliseum. The Jags will return a
strong nucleus of eight players to the team in 2007, and should
benefit from several key additions from this year¹s talented JV
³We¹ll lose six good players to graduation, but we¹ll return 90
percent of our pitching staff, along with our number three and four
hitters,² Kaufman noted.
Playoff notes: The NCS 3A playoff tournament finale will be an
all SCL affair as sixth-seeded Analy will square off against
fourth-seeded and two-time defending champion Casa Grande this
Saturday, June 3, at Santa Rosa Junior College.


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