Dixon finishes historic season fourth in Class 3A

JOLIET, Ill. (WIFR) Despite getting on the board first for the second straight day, Dixon was unable to hold onto the lead as the Dukes fell to Waterloo 9-2 in the Class 3A Third Place Game at Route 66 Stadium on Saturday.

Dixon plated a pair of runs in the third, including a RBI single to center by senior Tucker Cole to make it 2-0.

However, for the second consecutive day, mistakes cost the Dukes. Waterloo took advantage of a couple Dixon errors and scored four times in the fourth and four times in the fifth. The Bulldogs added another run in sixth after a wild pitch by Oscar Van Sickle.

"It hurts", said Van Sickle. "We made it all this way and then came here and it just wasn't our day. Yesterday or today. That just happens. It's part of the game."

Dixon rode its two horses (Payton Lawrence and Andrew Long) into the state tournament. The two seniors combined to go 15-0 with 178 strikeouts and a combined ERA of 1.20 entering the weekend. Each gave up five earned runs in the two losses.

But Lawrence looked on the bright side when it came to the downtrodden weekend.

"Got to play two extra games, got to spend a whole other weekend with them," said Lawrence. "It sucks. I'm not crying because we lost, I'm crying because it's over. It's just a blast."

Dixon has a lot to be proud of in a historical season. The Dukes won the program's first ever Regional, Sectional, and Super-Sectional plaque, along with the school's first team state trophy.

"We made all the history you can," said Lawrence. "So happy to play with my best friends."

"A lot of memories, on and off the field," said Van Sickle. "We had a great time coming here. Didn't go our way, but that's just baseball sometimes. We still had a blast."