‘Stangs host Tigers; Lady ‘Stangs start playoffs

Spring fever is a common thing for many people in late April when the weather begins to stay warmer.Fans of the Sweetwater High School baseball and softball teams, though, have another name for it: playoff fever.Since softball was adopted as a UIL sport, this is the first time for the Lady Mustangs (20-13) and the Mustangs (15-12) to both advance to the playoffs. In fact, in that 17-year span prior to 2013, each of the programs had gone to the playoffs just three times. But that’s all changed.The baseball team ends the regular season by hosting Snyder at 7 p.m. today, and will clinch the district championship with a win, plus a Big Spring win today over Wylie, which is tied with Sweetwater for the district lead at 7-2. If Sweetwater and Wylie finish in a first-place tie, the Mustangs will be con-sidered the No. 2 team due to the fact that the Bull-dogs swept their two head-to-head meetings. The dis-trict champion will receive a first-round bye.The Sweetwater softball team, meanwhile, starts the playoffs by going to the Lubbock area on Saturday to face Pecos in a Class 3A bi-district matchup that will start at 7 p.m. The game will be at Wolfforth Frenship High School. The Lady Mustangs were the District 4-3A runnerup this season at 6-4, while Pecos was the third-place team in District 3-3A. Saturday’s winner will face Pampa in the area playoffs.Sweetwater has lost two straight since clinching its playoff berth with a win over Big Spring, including a loss to Wylie in its season finale this past Saturday. According to head coach Tony Heredia, the team has concentrated this week on its hitting. “We’ve been leaving too many runners on base,” he said. “We’re not putting (the ball) down on the ground. “We know we could be bi-district champions or go home. I don’t think we are doubting ourselves. We were in every game in district play this year but one. We just haven’t had the big hit the last two games. We want to do that Saturday.”