As bleak as things seemed in the early going, the Rams never counted themselves out. As they had done so often throughout the regular season, they clawed their way back into the game and came painfully close to pulling another win out of their collective hats.
It all started in the bottom of the fifth frame, when first-pitch singles from Bob Boudreau and McCain Mason and an error by the shortstop put Cameron Bullock aboard to load the bases with no outs. Boudreau found his way home on a fielder's choice off the bat of Chris Ortiz and Rapp delivered a sacrifice fly into right field to plate Bullock.
The next inning, Allen got some redemption for his shaky start, blasting a towering solo home run over the high left field wall, 312 feet away, to bring the Rams within two. It was his first homer of the season and the team's fourth.
After the ball left his bat, Allen said his mind immediately went to his late mother, Robin Allen, who passed away unexpectedly last September.
"It felt great," he said. "I knew who I was doing it for. I just have no words for it. I'm just glad I finally got to hit a home run for my mom.
"I got my head down after the first inning, because I was sucking bad. My teammates brought me back up and if it wasn't for them, I wouldn't have hit at all today."
Barrick said he was pleased with the way his team showed their grit once again to end the season.
"The kids never gave up," he said. "They never quit and that's going to benefit us down the line. That's where we've come from. That's what Mineral Wells baseball is. We've matured a lot over the last four or five years and we don't ever think we're out of a game. We're going to fight to the finish and that's what I like to see. That's what makes me proud."
Barrick added he did not want the untimely playoff loss to tarnish an otherwise spectacular season by his team.
"It doesn't take away from what we've done this year. This team has come a million miles. Nobody gave us a chance to beat Kennedale and we swept them. I'm just proud of these kids. I love every one of them."