After a trip to the semi-finals last year at the state softball tournament last year, the expectation was there for the Cozad Haymakers.
“Last year we were excited to be going to state,” coach HaLea Messersmith said. “This year we said that this is what we planned to do. This was one of our check-marks we made. We enjoyed the district championship, now we are ready to get back to work.”
Not only did the Haymakers win the C-6 district championship, they didn’t allow any of their opponents at the tournament to score. They beat Chase County 10-0, Chadron 13-0 and Southern Valley/Alma 8-0.
“These guys are zoned in and focused,” Messersmith said. “They have the goals in mind that was set at the beginning of the year, and they are ready to accomplish them.”
Cozad opens up with a familiar foe as they take on the Auburn Bulldogs in the first round. The Haymakers defeated Auburn 9-0 during the regular season. However, the eighth seeded Bulldogs are coming in with a lot of momentum after they won the difficult C-1 district.
First year head coach, Grant Cole said his team is confident and excited to get another chance against Cozad.
“A lot of things happened in that game,” Cole said. “Our catcher and pitcher both got hurt and went out early in the same inning. The girls look forward to getting another chance against a good team like Cozad at full strength.”
The Haymakers are the No. 1 seed in the tournament.
Other state qualifiers in Class C are Malcolm, Raymond Central, Twin River, Guardian Angels Central Catholic, Central City and Bishop Neumann.
First round games start at 11:30 on Wednesday in Hastings.