The rain continued to fall and the field became muddy, but Fox Creek felt right at home.
All the wet and muddy practices throughout the season paid off for the Predators, who picked up a 10-2 win over Lamar on Saturday in the Class A Upper State tournament.
Fox Creek plays at home again Monday, where it can advance to the Upper State championship with a win.
“They responded well with the conditions,” Fox Creek coach Wesley Brown said. “They’re used to practicing in the rain. Between rain showers, we get out there in the mud and they adapt. I thought they did a really good job staying focused.”
The Predators (24-2) got a strong performance from starter Brent Lacey and used two big offensive innings to cruise.
In the second inning, Fox Creek scored four runs as six consecutive hitters reached, including Brandyn Quiller. His two-run single made it 2-1.
In the fifth, Fox Creek added five more runs, with Thomas Colvin and Roby Gillespie driving in a run apiece. Fox Creek was aided by an error on Lamar pitcher Malik Mack. With two on, Mack tried to get the lead runner out on a force at third, but the throw was way off, allowing two Predators to score.
On the other side, Fox Creek was solid in the field.
The Predators had their most important defensive play in the top of the fifth. Lamar trailed 4-2 and had the bases loaded with one out, but Fox Creek turned a double play to squash the rally.
“It’s exciting,” Brown said. “We’ve been consistent all year – we’ve had only one bad inning all year. That’s unheard of. I’m proud of these guys.”