Baseball to face Lone Star in regional quarterfinal

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  • Sophomore catcher Ralph Rucker blocks a low pitch during warm-ups prior to the first inning.

  • Senior pitcher Cameron Pool winds up to pitch to the Highland Park batter.

  • Senior Cameron Pool takes the mound for the Leopards.

  • Freshman Kolby Branch fields a ground ball at third base.

  • Senior Luke Finn back hands the ball during warm ups in the third inning. Finn played second base for the Leopards on Saturday.

  • Senior Jake Terwilliger stands on deck during the second inning. The Leopards were up 1-0 after Michael Difiore, up to bat, hit a home run.

  • Senior Luke Finn fields a ground ball and throws on the run to get the out at one.

  • Luke Stine pitches a breaking ball to the Highland Park batter at the top of the fourth inning.

  • Senior outfielder Zach Smith congratulates senior second baseman Luke Finn following his home-plate slide.

  • Senior Luke Finn makes contact during the sixth inning.

  • Senior Luke Finn runs through home plate after scoring a run. Finn later celebrated in the dugout with his teammates.

  • Sophomore Ralph Rucker advances senior Luke Finn to score a run.

  • Senior outfielder Colton Laurence congratulates first baseman Micheal DiFiore at the end of the sixth inning.

  • Freshman Kolby Branch slides into home during the Leopards eight run inning. Branch celebrates with senior Zach Smith after scoring the run.

  • Freshman Kolby Branch celebrates with senior Jake Terwilliger outside the dugout after scoring a run.

  • Sophomore Ralph Rucker and junior Logan Bowling celebrate their team's victory coming in from the outfield following the conclusion of the seventh inning.

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After a decisive sweep of Highland Park at Globe Life Park last weekend, the Leopards will now be headed to John Paul II High School in Plano for the regional quarterfinals against Lone Star.

“I feel like the competition’s really strong,” sophomore Josh Ringler said. “They do have a lot of guys on the mound that can throw hard, but I think we can handle them. Tonight’s gonna be our hardest matchup, because they have a guy throwing harder than usual, but tomorrow and the next game, I think we got them.”

Lone Star finished second in their district with a 13-5 record and swept Denison in the bi-district round and Wilson in area to advance to regionals.

Senior Cade Smitherman highlighted that Lone Star’s pitching will be the Leopards’  biggest challenge.

“They’re pretty solid,” Smitherman said. “They’ve  got a pitcher coming on tonight that’s pitched pretty well, but we’ve hit really good pitching, so I think if we just get deep in counts, we’ll do really well.”

If the Leopards are  victorious, they will face the winner of the other quarterfinal, either Joshua or Corsicana, in the regional semifinal next week on May 25.

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