Brett Loyd relays a throw to a teammate in the Moffat County High School parking lot. Loyd and the Bulldogs still are looking to play their first home game of the season and have not practiced on a field all week.

Photo by Nate Waggenspack

Brett Loyd relays a throw to a teammate in the Moffat County High School parking lot. Loyd and the Bulldogs still are looking to play their first home game of the season and have not practiced on a field all week.

Moffat County baseball still battling the elements

Remaining baseball schedule

Heading into away doubleheader at Basalt on Saturday

Wednesday: 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. vs. Cedaredge in Craig

April 27: 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. vs. Coal Ridge in Craig

May 4: 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. vs. Roaring Fork in Carbondale

May 7: 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. vs. Steamboat Springs in Craig

Weather once again has forced the Moffat County baseball team off the diamond, potentially hurting the Bulldogs’ chances moving forward.

Most outdoor spring sports in Northwest Colorado are used to dealing with cold weather, snowy conditions and indoor practices at the beginning of the season. With another significant snowfall in Craig during the weekend, however, the baseball team, now a month and a half into its season, still has not played a home game.

It’s an unusual problem, coach Justin Folley said Friday.

“Once we’re out, we stay out,” he said. “The only time normally we go back into the gym for practice is when it’s raining.”

But this spring, the Bulldogs had to retreat indoors for the past week because of wet field conditions and then snow. They made it back outside to practice in the high school parking lot Friday.

It has some of the team’s players chomping at the bit to play real baseball.

“It’s getting a little old,” Bubba Ivers said. “I’m ready to play a home game.”

Folley also feels for his seniors, who haven’t been able to play in front of a home crowd, for a couple of reasons.

“Not being able to play at home has been a punch to these guys,” he said. “Eight seniors who can’t play in front of their families and friends. Plus, I think playing at home could get us on a streak. They usually come out and want to win so bad those first couple games.”

But the slew of postponed and rescheduled games is not just an inconvenience for Moffat County. It also has created a logjam of games in the season’s final three weeks, which could lead to extra difficulty.

“It looks like we’re going to have a lot of games close together,” Wyatt Oberwitte said. “That’s going to be strenuous on our pitchers because we don’t have a ton of starters.”

Heading into Saturday’s doubleheader at Basalt — which Folley on Friday afternoon wasn’t certain would be played — the Bulldogs had four doubleheaders scheduled from Wednesday to May 7.

One doubleheader, against Steamboat Springs, does not have to be made up. But the rest, 3A Western Slope League games, must be played by May 7, in accordance with Colorado High School Activities Association rules.

“It could be a long last two weeks for us,” Folley said. “We have to be thinking about how many innings (pitchers) can throw in a week, and then also be looking at arm strength, how it’s holding up.”

While the time back indoors came at a difficult time for Moffat County, after spring break to keep them off the field even longer, Folley has liked the work ethic from his players, which he hopes will carry them during the final portion of the year.

“We weren’t on the field long enough to get where we need to be,” he said. “But I know these guys have worked hard and stayed sharp. They’re mentally tough, too, so we’ll be OK.”

Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@craigdailypress.com.

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