The Estevan Tower Wolves weren't the only team to see their season end at the hands of the expansion Arcola Threshers at the Harbourne tournament in Kenosee on the weekend.
The Wolves lost their final round-robin game 7-0 to Arcola on Saturday to bow out of the Saskota Baseball League playoffs.
Arcola, which finished the regular season at 4-7-2, steamrolled their way to the league final on Sunday, which they lost 5-0 to the first-place Carlyle Cardinals.
"They showed that they were no fluke," Wolves pitcher Devin Aspinall said of the Threshers.
The Harbourne tournament used a new format this year, with the top eight teams being split into two pools for a round-robin, beginning Friday with the top four teams each hosting a game, then continuing Saturday in Kenosee.
The top two teams in each pool advanced to the semifinals.
After upsetting the Lampman Pirates 5-2 on Friday and losing 7-2 to Carlyle Saturday afternoon, the Wolves needed a win over Arcola to punch their ticket to the semis.
But the Threshers had something else in mind.
"We didn't expect much of them because it's their first year in the league and they didn't win a ton of games this year," said Aspinall.
Riley Panteluk started on the mound, with the Wolves banking on beating Arcola and saving their top pitching for the semis.
"They came out and absolutely hammered the ball everywhere. Even the soft hits found holes. We hit everything hard and it went right at them," Aspinall said.
The Wolves finished third in their pool at 1-2.
Arcola went on to edge the Carnduff Astros 3-2 in 10 innings in the semifinals. Carlyle blanked the Kenosee Cubs 5-0 in the other semi.
For Estevan, the tournament began on a positive note with the victory over the Pirates.
"It was a good start. We knew it was going to be an important game for us to win that one," Aspinall said.
He said Adam Ziegler had a strong outing on the mound and the Wolves plated a few runs early to get to the Pirates' bullpen.
Against Carlyle, the Wolves conserved their pitching in a game they didn't expect to win, and they fell behind early.
"We knew we didn't have to beat Carlyle to get into the playoffs. We were keying on beating Arcola," Aspinall said.
Despite finishing fifth in the regular season, the Wolves had high expectations and hoped to have their full lineup for the weekend, but that didn't happen.
"Our expectations should've been maybe a little bit lower based on our season," Aspinall said. "I'm not real thrilled at the ending, but we kind of understood we weren't a favourite."
He said it was a tough season with a more inexperienced club than in the past, but he hopes the development seen this year will pay dividends in the future.