No. 1 Catalina Foothills earns spot in 5A state championship with sweep of No. 4 Horizon

No. 1 Catalina Foothills went from being sent to the 5A elimination bracket last week by No. 4 Scottsdale Horizon to winning three straight games, including two over the Huskies, to reach the championship game against No. 2 Queen Creek Casteel.

The championship game between the Falcons (27-2-1) and Casteel (26-6) is scheduled to be played at Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Tuesday at 4 p.m.

Catalina Foothills beat Horizon by identical 8-5 scores on Wednesday and Thursday nights at HoHoKam Park in Mesa. The Falcons were sent to the elimination bracket last week after losing 8-4 to the Huskies.

In Thursday’s victory, Catalina Foothills overcame a 3-0 deficit by rallying for four runs in the second and third innings.

Dane White’s RBI single combined with an error allowed Catalina Foothills to cut the lead to 3-2 with two outs in the second.

Lucas Polec later walked with the bases loaded to tie the game.

A wild pitch and another walk with the bases loaded issued to Matt Adams allowed two more runs to score to build the lead to 5-3.

A two-run single by Polec that included a throwing error allowing another run to score on the play increased the margin to 8-3.

Horizon rallied for runs in the fifth and seventh innings but pitching by Paden Good and Adams was sufficient to keep the lead.

Good scattered six hits in five innings with three strikeouts and no walks. Adams did not allow an earned run in his two innings.

Polec finished with three RBIs, Ganon Dwyer was 2 for 3 with two runs and a double and White was 1 for 2 with a run and RBI.


— Catalina Foothills has reached the state championship game five times (2002, 2004, 2005, 2010 and 2018) but has yet to win a title.

Lance Robertson, who coached the Falcons to their state championship appearance in 2010, is in his first year back with the program after coaching at Pusch Ridge and Ironwood Ridge.

— The game between Catalina Foothills and Casteel will feature three Arizona commits — Casteel junior left-hander Mason Russell and junior catcher Kade Thompson and Catalina Foothills sophomore first baseman Ganon Dwyer.

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