BEST LAID PLANS, of mice and men ….

We all know how they often go astray, as Poet Robert Burns said, and that’s what happened to La Mirada and California high schools’ baseball and softball teams, respectively.
La Mirada battled on even terms for seven innings before making uncharacteristic mistakes and losing, 11-5, in Thursday’s CIF-SS, Division III championship game against Loyola at Dodger Stadium.
Was Loyola the better team? That day, probably, although it might be more appropriate to say the Matadores were the worser (my word, not Webster’s) of two because of their sizeable contributions to the outcome.
California was caught in one of the valleys that indentified their rollercoaster season in a 1-0 loss to Beckman in Saturday’s CIF-SS, Division III softball championship contest at Deanna Manning Stadium in Irvine.
Was Beckman the better team? According to the score and one brief moment (the top of the sixth inning), yes. Otherwise, it’s not a sure thing.
California pitcher Tara Silagi said afterward “the loss leaves a sorry taste in our mouths.”
And therein lies the rub.
The dark side of an elimination tournament is that there is but one winner.
It is paramount that those teams which have dropped by the wayside en route remember that they were among a select few who earned the opportunity to compete for the title, and that the victory is in the journey, even if it ends prematurely.
Easier said than done, but a single loss should be allowed to only momentarily spoil the season, and in no way should it erode what otherwise was accomplished along the way.
Congratulations are in order to both La Mirada and California.

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