Lobos on five-game skid heading into district tournament

Mark DeLap
Posted 7/20/22

Lobos final homestand

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Lobos on five-game skid heading into district tournament


WHEATLAND – The Lobos have dropped eight of their last nine games and this past week have hit a five-game losing streak as they head to the East “A” district tournament in Douglas.

They are hoping that their chances will turn as they are excited about entering the new post season schedule.

In the Douglas Tournament played July 8-10, Wheatland dropped games to Torrington, 9-1, Powell, 13-1 and Douglas, 8-7.

In the first game of the Douglas tournament Aidyn Saucedo gave up only six hits for the Tigers and the Lobos could never get a man to home plate past the second inning. They stranded seven runners in the contest. Jake Hicks was the losing pitcher for the Lobos. The bright spot in the game was Ryland Petroski who went 2-3 at the plate.

In the second game July 9 the Lobos had the unenviable task of facing a tough Powell team who garnered 13 runs and 15 hits on top of taking advantage of four Lobos errors. For the second straight game Wheatland left too many men on base and could only see one player round the bags. Kade Preuit and JP Anderson each had two hits apiece for the Lobos. Anderson took the loss giving up six runs and six hits.

Sunday afternoon, July 10 the Lobos felt a different spark out hitting the Douglas Cats seven to four, but in the end watched their opponents advance their baserunners at opportune times when Lobos pitchers combined to put nine Cats on base with walks. The Lobos held the back and forth lead through the fifth inning when late one-run rallies but Douglas into a tie and then into a walk-off win in the bottom of the seventh inning. Langdon Goodrich took the loss for the Lobos. Anderson and Austin Warren each had two hits for the Lobos.

Wheatland played their final home games of the season July 12 and dropped a pair of games to the always tough Cheyenne Hawks. Without having given up five runs in the fifth inning, the Lobos played an even game with the Hawks matching them hit for hit, but once again, errors in the field and nine base on balls were a difference maker. In the first game Petroski took the loss while Preuit took the loss in the second game. Although Petroski took a shelling on the mound, he had the hot bat going 4-4.

Four Lobos were playing in their last home games. Recent graduates Jake Hicks who is going into the military, Kade Preuit who will be 20 years old by next season, and two returning players both under 19, Langdon Goodrich and Noah Whitfield will also be turning 20 by next season.

Hicks who has been playing ball since seventh grade said, “I’ve been playing a lot of catcher this year and I like it a lot and think it’s my favorite position.”

Hicks is heading to Fort Benning, Georgia, for basic training and he leaves July 27. Hicks said it makes him a little nervous heading into the service in a volatile world climate, but said he is also really excited at the opportunity. His favorite memory as a Lobo was winning the Spearfish Tournament in 2021.

Preuit said that he will miss his teammates as he hangs up his Lobos uniform for the final time. He will be doing double duty this week as he is not only participating for the Lobos at the district tournament but will also be playing in The Wyoming North/South all-star game which will be held at Casper College will take place July 23 at 5 p.m. at T-Bird gym at Casper College.

“I started playing ball 15 years ago,” Preuit said. “Outfield this year has been familiar to me, and pitching I feel I haven’t done too bad, I guess.”

Whitfield who is attending St. John’s University was invited to walk on to the baseball team and he is seriously thinking about it. Whitfield has played baseball since he was 6 years old.

“I am going to miss this,” Whitfield said. “I love it because it’s a team sport and too many athletes today forget about that. It feels really weird putting my glove down here for the last time. Last year we had districts here and I kind of had a feeling I’d be back for one more year, but now it’s like, holy cow… this is real.”

Goodrich used one word when he was asked what it was going to be like playing his final game on the Lobo’s home diamond. “Interesting.”

“I actually thought that this day would never come,” Goodrich said. “It’s certainly not something you think about when you start playing. I started playing when I was three or 4 years old in T-ball. There are times when I wish I had a few more years, but then you just come to the realization that it has to come to an end.”

He said that his favorite position has been first base due to the amount of action that he sees.

“It keeps me focused in the game,” he said. “

Cheyenne 11 – Wheatland 6

TB: J Hicks, A Warren 2, K Preuit, A Suko, N Whitfield, J Anderson, R Petroski 4, HBP: J Anderson, SB: K Preuit, LOB: 10

Cheyenne 10 – Wheatland 0

TB: J Hicks, N Schaffner, A Warren, R Petroski, SB: A Warren, R Petroski, LOB: 5

Torrington 9 – Wheatland 1

L: J Hicks, P-S: J Hicks 76-55, M Wakkuri 25-17, HBP: J Hicks 3, M Wakkuri, BF: J Hicks 26, M Wakkuri 10

Powell 13 – Wheatland 1

L: J Anderson, P-S: J Anderson 59-34, L Goodrich 30-21, A Warren 23-11, WP: J Anderson, A Warren, HBP: J Anderson, A Warren, BF: J Anderson 19, L Goodrich 10, A Warren 7

Douglas 8 – Wheatland 7

TB: R Petroski, L Goodrich, K Preuit, J Anderson 2, A Warren 2, SAC: N Whitfield, CS: R Petroski, HBP: M Wakkuri, N Whitfield, N Schaffner, SB: J Anderson, A Suko, LOB: 6