Bulldogs hope to sink Sailors in rival game
April 2, 2001
This will be the second-to-last match up against Steamboat Springs for the five seniors on the Bulldogs baseball team, and it will go off with a bang.
C.J. Rugh is among one of those players, but he hasn’t even considered that this will be one of the last times he will face his high school rival.
“I haven’t really even thought about this being my last home game against them, since we’ve mainly just been preparing for the game itself,” he said. “Altogether I’m pretty excited about playing Steamboat, but I always am.”
The varsity game starts at 4 p.m. at the Craig Middle School field and will be accompanied by much fanfare.
According to Bulldogs Coach Kip Hafey, the game drew more 1,000 spectators last year and is expected to be another record-breaker this year, if the weather permits.
Steamboat (0-4-0) is considered the weaker team, but when the Sailors play Moffat County they usually elevate their play. The Sailors are an ambiguous team both at bat and on the mound. The lack of stand-out players may have been their downfall in their four losses, all to Class 3A teams. It is still undetermined who will take the mound for the Sailors.
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“This will be Steamboat’s league opener, and since it’s against us, I’m sure they’ll be hungry,” Hafey said.
The Bulldogs will enter the game as they would any other trying to keep their heads above all the out-of-game distractions.
The line-up will remain similar to what it has been most of the year, but it is still undecided who will take pitching duties. Sophomore lefty Jerod Estey’s arm will be the deciding factor on who will lead from the field. If his arm is rested, he’ll start, if it’s not, junior Chris Field will most likely take the duty.
“We’ll stick to pretty much to the same game plan that we have all year. We’ve made a few adjustments, but it’s nothing too drastic,” Hafey said.
The crowd expected to attend the game will play a role for the teams, with both feeling the pressure to perform. A high number of Steamboat fans attending the game might turn out to be the incentive the Sailors need to produce because, as Hafey described, the Sailors are a very up-and-down team that plays off emotion.
The likelihood of Sailors’ fans outnumbering the Bulldogs’ fans is minimal, considering the amount of fanfare being supplied by Craig residents.
The first 200 spectators will receive free hot dogs and soda. There will be free stickers for children while supplies last. And before the game, the Bulldogs will work phantom fielding. A cannon will be fired at the beginning of the game and after big Bulldogs plays.
Coach Bob Satterwhite, father of senior catcher Rob Satterwhite, will be honored at the game by throwing the first pitch. The honor is being given to him for his help with the Moffat County baseball team.
“I feel that, distractions aside, we’re ready to play, and we’re also lucky to have such a great rival game to play in,” Hafey said.