Posted by Beacon Journal sportswriter Nate Ulrich
When high school teams make successful playoff runs, their wins are often attributed to the players becoming hot at the right time.
Sometimes that is true. But "peaking at the right time" can be overrated, too.
The Stow and Green baseball teams were on fire heading into their respective district championship games. But they both lost on Wednesday night.
Stow entered its Hudson Division I district final against Brecksville with 11 consecutive wins, including a 5-0 victory over Western Reserve Conference rival Cuyahoga Falls in a district semifinal the night before.
Brecksville limped into the district final one day after a hardfought, 8-7 win over Hudson in eight innings. But Brecksville defeated Stow 4-3.
Green entered its Canton Division I district final against Lake having won 14 of its past 17 games. But the Bulldogs fell 4-1.
Stow and Green have several talented players. They both had respectable seasons with winning records.
So what does all this mean?
Teams need more than just momentum and talent to advance in the playoffs. They also need some luck.
State champions are usually very talented and well coached. But they usually catch some breaks along the way, too.