Moffat County baseball powers through Pirates for first win
Bulldogs split with Olathe in Saturday doubleheader
April 2, 2016
Mild Saturday weather was most welcome for the members of the Moffat County High SchoolMoffat County High School varsity baseball team, but even more welcome was their first win. varsity baseball team, but even more welcome was their first win.
Moffat County High School varsity baseball team, but even more welcome was their first win.
The Bulldogs were 1-1 in a weekend doubleheader at home as Olathe came to Craig, taking both a 13-7 win and a 7-2 defeat.
The day started slowly and got held up somewhat when during warm-ups, Pirates outfielder Trace Medina missed a catch that caught him in the mouth, knocking out one tooth, chipping another and loosening a third.
Olathe coach Darren Sofka said the incident that took the player out for the day and off to an oral surgeon got his teammates a little rattled.
"I don't want to think it made a difference, but it shook some kids up," he said. "We knew he was OK, so we just had to go play. Unfortunately,"
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Mike Vaughn was the first to score for the Pirates as loose ball at home plate in the second inning gave Olathe a 1-0 advantage, but MCHS more than made up the difference.
It began with Colby Beckett getting hit by a pitch, following with a walk for Spencer Turner, while Josh Turner and Mike Bingham each took a single and one RBI.
Trveor Kuhn doubled down with a solid hit to deep center field, standing at second base with two RBIs of his own.
Connor Knez, Hunter Roberts and Brett Loyd went one, two, three from there with a single, a double and a triple, respectively and soon Beckett was batting again.
With one last run from Loyd scored on an Olathe throwing error, Moffat County was up, 8-1, going into the third inning, defense quickly putting the Bulldogs back in the batter's box.
Though enthusiastic about the breakaway lead, MCHS coach Justin Folley reminded his players they were only halfway done with the game.
"We can't let up," he said. "This is still a ball game, stay on top of it."
The fourth inning got shaky as the Pirates celebrated a home run by Trent Rose, three more runs coming after his round-tripper as Olathe started to pick up steam.
The Pirates picked up two more in the fifth off a single by Rafael Nieto, and when Olathe pulled off a double play, the pressure was on for the home team.
The sixth inning saw Bingham pick up his sixth and final strikeout on his 100th pitch to send the Bulldogs back to the plate, ready to rally.
A grounder down the third baseline by Roberts stayed in play just long enough for him to be safe at first, quickly stealing second and making it back home off a line drive single by Loyd.
Beckett and Spencer Turner each got on base with a bunt, while Josh Turner sent the ball to right field, picking up two RBIs and Kuhn put it in left field for two more with 18 total hits by the boys in gray and blue.
Adain Wilmot took over on the mound to close, throwing a mere 12 pitches and picking up two strikeouts as the team claimed the win.
The Bulldog mojo carried over for game two as they looked to add another win, but despite first inning scores from RBIs by Beckett and Spencer Turner, the tide turned for the Pirates, who had a newfound vigor, scoring four runs in the third inning alone, with 11 total hits, holding the Dogs to six hits, complete with 14 strikeouts by Jacob Mazza, 93 pitches across the whole game.
"Jacob had a really good game, throwing strikes, keeping it low, keeping guys off-balance," Sofka said. "In my opinion, that's where it all starts."
Loyd started on the mound, throwing 61, while Roberts closed with a total of 69, seven strikeouts between them
While the Pirates may have gotten the wind back in their sails a little too easily, Folley was still pleased with MCHS players taking the win, the first, within the conference or otherwise for the team, now 1-5 overall and 1-4 in the 3A Western Slope League.
"They got on our heels a little bit, we let them get back and that team is gonna fight every time," Folley said of the first game.
The first WSL defeat for Olathe keeps them in third place at 5-1, 5-5 overall, traveling Thursday to Bayfield.
Altogether, the day was a sign of improvement as MCHS heads into spring break, a game in Rifle awaiting them April 11.
"Offensively, much, much better," Folley said of the Dogs' progress since the start of the season.
Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com or follow him on Twitter @CDP_Sports.Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com or follow him on Twitter @CDP_Sports.