Jerod Estey got all the strikeouts but the one that counted most against the Rifle Bears.
The junior pitcher relieved senior Chris Field after 6 and 1/2 innings and came within one strikeout from winning the game.
The junior struck out two batters but walked two, setting up the game-winning, two-run double at the bottom of the sixth.
The 3-2 loss against Rifle (4-2) is the Bulldogs (7-5) second loss of the season and coach Kip Hafey knows why.
"We've got great pitching and they're helping us hang in there," he said.
"We're not getting the hitting we need when we need it."
The only runs of the day came at the top of the fifth inning when senior David Corriveau hit a two-run single. Otherwise the Bulldogs were silent at the plate.
The pitching, on the other hand, hung tough throughout the game with Field allowing only one run and Estey allowing just two.
Rifle's pitchers were equally as steely facing the Bulldogs, allowing only six hits in the game. The loss puts Rifle in a two-way tie for first place in the Western Slope Conference with Glenwood Springs while dropping the Bulldogs to second place.
"Right now we need guys to step up and start making plays for us," Hafey said.
"We need to be able to support the performances our pitchers are giving us."