Evanston’s cricket side dropped a competitive match to the Q.C. Kings at Washington Park Sunday afternoon, Oct. 9, in the finals of the Division II Midwest Cricket Conference playoffs. Evanston set a target of 189 and was topped in the 30th over by three wickets.

Coach Magnus Huggins said he was proud of his team, but that they “just didn’t have enough to take the big trophy.” Over the years the team has not been playing up to its potential, he said, but this year, other than a lull midseason, they played well.

Donieke Perrin, the team’s league-leading batsman, went out for a duck on the first ball. Coach Huggins said it “was just a perfect ball … unplayable.” But Derron Blackwood stepped up, pacing Evanston with a steady, impressive 77.

In the field, Perrin bowled four wickets, keeping the outcome in doubt. A couple of fielding miscues, however, hurt the team’s chances. “If they [hadn’t dropped] the catches …” said Coach Huggins, citing three dropped balls as a key to the outcome. Nevertheless, the team’s second-place finish is its best in years.

Things will not get easier next year, as finishing second means promotion to Division I. “We have to come to play every week,” said Coach Huggins. The competition will be much stiffer, with seasoned and energetic opponents. Next season promises to be challenging for the team. For spectators, the quality and consistency of the cricket played should be much better. Those wishing an introduction to the game should consider coming out to James Park early next summer to see the home team in action.