Rough finish gives KoMets fourth seed
The Kasson-Mantorville softball team has the talent necessary to make a run late into the section tournament. With an offense that can get runs across the plate and a pitching staff that is learning from each and every start, it only takes a 10-day hot stretch to go from a inconsistent team to one playing for a berth in the state tournament.
Over the past 10 games, the KoMets haven’t been able to find the consistency needed to make that run. After beginning the season at 6-2, K-M has dropped eight of its final nine games to finish the regular season with a record of 7-10. That record earned the fourth seed in the Section 1AAA tournament, which kicked off Tuesday with the KoMets hosting Red Wing. “We ended up where we should have,” Mann said of the draw. “It’s nice to host and have one final game here at home.”
The KoMets final week of the season was a tough one that began with a home doubleheader against Pine Island and Cannon Falls on May 15. In both games, K-M just couldn’t get things going, first in a 7-2 defeat to the Panthers and then, after a tough battle under the lights, falling to Cannon Falls 4-3. An added game to the schedule took place on May 16 as the KoMets hosted Rochester John Marshall. Once again, the K-M bats that have been the strength of the team for most of the season couldn’t produce as the KoMets would fall to the Rockets by a score of 6-0.
From there, K-M ran into one of the best teams in the state as they traveled to Zumbrota-Mazeppa for the season finale. The Cougars pounced on the KoMets early and wound up taking an 11-0 victory to give K-M a sour taste in their mouth heading into the playoffs.
“We’ve not been able to play a complete seven innings,” Mann said of the recent struggles. “We’ve had a few errors, walks and we’ve been unable to get that clutch hit that we were able to get earlier in the season. We started to see some better at-bats toward the end, so hopefully we can get things going again.”
That process began on Tuesday with the Red Wing game, which Mann stressed would require a complete seven-inning effort. The KoMets’ next challenge would come on Thursday evening at Todd Park in Austin, where K-M would either face top seeded Winona or fall into the elimination tracket to face
either Austin or Albert Lea.