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White Buffalos' fastpitch fighting for playoff lives

The playoffs are not out of the picture for the Madras fastpitch team, not just yet.

The White Buffaloes kept the slim chances of advancing to the postseason alive with a solid 12-3 win over Estacada Monday night. But the Buffs will need at least two more wins this week to have an outside shot of grabbing a Class 4A postseason berth.

Heading into the final week of the Tri-Valley Conference's regular season, Gladstone (12-0) has locked up first place. The other two playoff spots out of the league, at this point, belong to La Salle (8-4) and North Marion (8-4).

Madras is 5-6 and will need La Salle or North Marion to implode to get in or score some impressive wins in the final week to get a high enough ranking to get a play-in game. The Buffs were at Gladstone Tuesday and play host to Molalla Wednesday for senior night. Madras closes out the regular season at North Marion Friday.

"We're not out of it, not yet," Madras coach Charlie Brown said. "I think we need to win three out of four to have a chance. Whichever three it is doesn't matter."

Even with the first one out of the way — Jasmyn Reese was solid once again inside the circle and Shelby Maurtison and Keeley Brown paced the offense — the Buffs have plenty of work to do.

But the team is taking a very relaxed approach to the playoff chase.

"The girls are gaining confidence," Brown said. "They are seeing the ball, they are driving the ball. All the girls are asking what we want them to do for the team."

Brown said the team has been keeping things loose. In fact, some of the girls don't follow the standings at all and have no idea where the team sits and what it needs to do to keep playing.

But others, like Mauritson, have a keen eye on what's going on.

"We're going in and giving it our all," the junior shortstop, who bounced a triple off the top of the fence, said. "I know everyone on the team wants to make the postseason. We're just going to give it our all and see what happens."

Mauritson has had a taste of the playoffs, as the Buffs advanced her freshman year. Madras lost in a play-in game last season.

So there is some pressure to make it back.

"I feel like there is pressure on me, because I'm one of the upperclassmen and I feel like a lot of people look up to me, so I try to do the best I can," Mauritson said. "But at the same time, try to not be nervous because then I just play crappy."

Brown said the task at hand is clear.

"It's one game at a time and all we're worried about is who we have in front us, just like we have all season," Brown said. "That's all we're worried about."

Buffs still seek first league win

There are just two games left in the Madras baseball season and the Buffs are still looking for that first league win.

There have been plenty of close calls, but after Monday night's 12-2 loss at Estacada, Madras is 0-13 in league play and closes out the season this week.

The Buffs are at Molalla Wednesday and play their final home game Friday against North Marion.

Madras saw a week that has been reflective of its season, losing to La Salle in a close 8-7 game before getting burned 10-0 by Gladstone.



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  • 23 Oct 2014

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