By Greg Gielczyk
HOUGHTON LAKE – Few teams have enjoyed much success trying to slow down the Grayling baseball team since early in the season when the Vikings lost four straight games.
The Vikings haven’t lost since and continued their streak with a sweep of their two games in the Houghton Lake Invitational tournament on Saturday, May 21.
So there’s no shame in the Houghton Lake Bobcats being unable to get a handle on the high flying Vikings despite the fact they were playing at home which ordinarily would be an advantage.
Grayling advanced to the finals where the Vikings would eventually emerge victorious to claim the trophy with a 7-1 victory over the Bobcats in the opening round on a sun splashed morning game.
Joel Kubiak pitched for the Bobcats and was saddled with the loss but received precious little offensive support from a team handcuffed by the solid Vikings pitching staff that would not give an inch.
Luke Steckler and Joe Stiles each came up with single hits for the Bobcats, and the Bobcats managed to advance Stiles around the bases to score their only run of the game. Other than that there was little to cheer about for Houghton Lake.
Houghton Lake rebounded to win the consolation game, 2-1 behind the solid pitching of Stiles while the Bobcats managed to put together enough offense when it counted to produce the game-winning run.
Seth Brandel, Stiles and Nolan Hans each came up with hits for the Bobcats. Hans and Zac Frederick had the most productive days offensively as each managed to drive in a run with their singles.