Moffat County baseball slams Rangely, 17-9 | CraigDailyPress.com

Moffat County baseball slams Rangely, 17-9

Coach: Team ‘rounding corner’ as season progresses

Sometimes a close loss is just the inspiration a team needs to get a big win.

Moffat County High SchoolMoffat County High School varsity baseball rounded out its week with a 17-9 victory at home against Rangely, a win that comes after an 8-7 loss Monday in Rifle. varsity baseball rounded out its week with a 17-9 victory at home against Rangely, a win that comes after an 8-7 loss Monday in Rifle.

Moffat County High School varsity baseball rounded out its week with a 17-9 victory at home against Rangely, a win that comes after an 8-7 loss Monday in Rifle.

The Panthers were able to get on the board quickly, leading 2-0, as the Bulldogs took to the plate in the first inning, but the home team was on top before long, the whole side at the plate as an assortment of walks and singles put them ahead, 5-2, the same dynamic getting them three more runs in the second inning to make it 8-2.

Rangely got back into it with a series of walks in the third that helped them turn it into an 8-6 gap, but the Dogs answered right back with back-to-back doubles by Brett Loyd and Colby Beckett, and when the dust cleared, Moffat County was leading 12-6.

MCHS saw what may have been its biggest burst in the sixth as Eddie Smercina, Ben Robinson and Adain Wilmot, all having been walked, each crossed home plate thanks to a shot to center field by Loyd that fell just short of becoming a grand slam that he was still able to stretch into a triple, diving into the dirt at third base.

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Both Loyd and Beckett had five RBIs apiece for the game.

On the mound for the first time this season, Dylan Kincade threw the first three innings, claiming three strikeouts in 54 pitches. Jefferson Piatt closed the game with two strikeouts and 73 total pitches.

"We put the bats on the ball, and our defense was pretty good," said Piatt, a freshman, attributing the win to good teamwork.

The up-and-coming freshman and novice senior Kincade each handled the day well, said MCHS coach Justin Folley, while the rest of the team did the work in the field and at the plate.

"A lot of quality at-bats today, putting up 17 runs shows that," he said. "A few mental mistakes here and there, but offense kind of covered that up."

While the Panthers are an 0-11 2A squad, it was keeping up the intensity that earned the 2-6 Dogs the win that barely eluded them earlier in the week.

"We've turned a corner, now we just need to keep rounding it, we can't stop," Folley said.

Next Tuesday brings in the Grand Valley Cardinals — who also beat Rangely, 11-7, this week — followed by a weekend doubleheader in Basalt, the Longhorns keeping a tenuous grasp on fourth place in the 3A Western Slope League.

With the top four teams in the conference eligible for the postseason, the Dogs are still very much in the running for that slot, and Piatt believes it's simple what the team needs to do.

"Just keep winning until playoffs," he said.

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.