New Bloomfield was 90 feet away from tying Pilot Grove on Friday but couldn't score enough as the Wildcats lost 3-2.
Senior Trevor Jordan had just hit a triple in the sixth inning to score junior Brendon Carter and New Bloomfield's second run, but senior Lucas Buscher — who drove in the Wildcats' first run on a double — grounded out to end the threat.
Pilot Grove's Bo Vinson was a two-way star for the Tigers (4-1), pitching five innings of one-run ball while striking out seven and going 2-for-3 with a double and a two-run home run.
Vinson's home run would happen in the first inning with two outs already recorded by New Bloomfield senior Ashton Schuster, who allowed three runs on four hits and four walks in three innings, to give Pilot Grove the early 2-0 lead.
Buscher would cut the lead in half in the third inning, but Pilot Grove would get that run back in its half of the inning.
The Wildcats (3-2) would load the bases in the fourth and fifth innings with no outs and one out, respectively, but Vinson would work out of the jams.
Senior Michael Saleny would pitch three shutout innings in relief, allowing one hit and striking out three, but New Bloomfield would go down in the order in the seventh.
Jordan went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a walk, and Carter scored both Wildcat runs despite not having a hit but rather two walks.
There were nine hits total in the game and only one error on New Bloomfield.
The Wildcats will have a home game Monday against Prairie Home with Bunceton (1-4). New Bloomfield defeated the Panthers 17-4 on Tuesday at Prairie Home.