Saints disappointed in final result, but proud of effort

#4, Tyler Cook from Santa Fe slides into second base with a steal under the tag from #1, Andrew Collazo of Howard College in the first inning.

Johnny Wiggs knew before the season started that his Santa Fe (Fla.) College baseball team was going to be a good one.

Just how good, he wasn’t sure.

At the start of the season, the Saints’ head coach was just hoping the Saints would make it out of the always-tough Florida district.

That’s why, despite losing Friday night’s Alpine Bank Junior College World Series championship game, he could be disappointed in the outcome, a 7-4, 10-inning loss, but not in his team.

“We went toe-to-toe with Howard, considered the best team in the country,” Wiggs said.

The Saints nearly won Friday’s game when the potential game-winning run was thrown out at the plate in the bottom of the ninth to send the game into extra innings.

“It hurts right now, it stings,” Wiggs said, knowing the pain of the loss will subside quickly when the players realize what they’ve accomplished this season.

“It will soak in,” Wiggs said of reaching the national championship game.

“This was a wonderful experiece,” Saints shortstop Alex Godshall said “I enjoyed every second of it.”

Wiggs noted the team was 9-11 before it began its conference schedule.

“It’s been unbelievable all season,” Santa Fe right fielder Ryan Mathews said. “Of course we wanted to win it by we’re very happy where we ended up.”

The players stuck together as a team after the game.

“These are some of the best guys I’ve ever been around,” Godshall said.

Mathews echoed his sentiments.

“Coming to junior college in Santa Fe was the best decision I ever made,” he said.

As for Wiggs, he stood tall with his players as well.

“I’m proud as I can be to be these guys’ coach,” he said.


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