ST. GEORGE — The opening weekend of the baseball season wrapped up Saturday with Pine View winning the Panther-Tiger Classic, Desert Hills (almost) avenging a bad loss and the other teams in the region taking some lumps. Here’s a look at the games:
Salem Hills 4, Desert Hills 3 (F/9)
Even though they didn’t get a win, the Thunder have to feel some measure of vindication after Saturday’s extra-inning loss to the Skyhawks.
Salem Hills beat DH in a mercy-rule shortened game on Friday, but Saturday’s game was anything but a blowout. In fact, Desert Hills had the go-ahead run in scoring position with less than two outs in both the seventh and ninth innings (DH was the visitor, despite playing on its home field).
However, both times the Thunder left opportunities out on the base paths and Salem Hills was able to finally end the game on a bases loaded walk in the bottom of the ninth.
“We definitely owed them one after that butt-kicking yesterday,” said D-Hills pitcher Brayson Hurdsman. “For me, personally, coming out to the mound and pitching well was important after getting beat that badly. I wanted to go out there and throw up some zeroes for my guys.”
Hurdsman did just that, allowing just one run in five innings. The Thunder led 2-1 heading into the bottom of the sixth, but a couple of singles and a couple of errors opened the door for Salem Hills to score twice and take a 3-2 lead.
Desert Hills was able to tie the game in the top of the seventh as Trey Allred was hit by a pitch and sacrificed to second by Seth Betts. Daniel Arrey then tied the score with a rip to left field for a double. Trey Winget, who homered earlier in the game, was intentionally walked and then, after a passed ball moved the two runners to second and third, Hurdsman was also intentionally walked.
Unfortunately for the Thunder, SH pitcher Colton Lundell was able to record a strikeout to end the threat with the bases loaded.
Desert Hills got a man on in the eighth and two men on in the ninth, but again missed out on the opportunities to take the lead.
Alex Eakin came in and pitched the seventh, eighth and ninth for D-Hills. The junior hurler, getting his first varsity experience, kept the Skyhawks off the scoreboard until the ninth, when he walked home the game-ending run. The decisive walk came one pitch after two D-Hills players collided attempting to field a foul pop in play near the DH dugout.
“Obviously we’ve got a few things still to work on,” Thunder coach Jerry Beck said. “But I feel a lot better about things now than after that first game we played them. I was anxious to see how we would respond today. That’s one of the top teams in 4A and we gave them all they wanted. It was intense. It felt like a region game.”
Hurdsman got no decision, but allowed just five hits and two earned runs. He struck out 11 and walked just one. Chad Nelson had three hits for the Thunder as D-Hills outhit S-Hills 9-6.
Lundell worked a complete game for Salem Hills, allowing three earned runs. He also went 2 for 3 with a couple of RBIs in the game.
The Thunder, 1-3, will host the Foot and Ankle Institute Invitational Thursday through Saturday next week, beginning with a 4:30 p.m. game Thursday against Foothill out of Las Vegas.
Pine View 10, Logan 1
The Panthers captured the championship of the Panther-Tiger Classic by going 4-0 over the three days of the tourney.
More impressively, Pine View won every game in a blowout and the run scored Saturday by the Grizzlies was the only run PV allowed. Pine View outscored Granger, Delta, Sky View and Logan by a combined 47-1 tally.
“You know, every guy hit the ball, one through nine,” Panthers coach Troy Wall said. “The first three innings (against Logan) were pretty intense. But I think their guy ran out of gas and we really started to swing the bats.”
All-state pitcher Dakota Donovan started for Pine View and pitched 5.1 innings allowing six hits and one unearned run. He struck out 11 and walked two, then was relieved by Cole Green, who was every bit as impressive. Green struck out all five batters he faced.
The Panthers led 3-1 heading into the bottom of the fourth. Brooks Barney led off with a base on balls and was followed by Donovan, who also walked. On a double steal, the ball was overthrown and Barney came in (making it 4-1) with Donovan going to third. Connor Clark then made it 5-1 with an RBI single.
After Jagun Leavitt was hit by a pitch, Jackson Bithell and Green followed with RBI singles to break the game open at 7-1. Pine View added a run in the fifth and Tybo Johnston had a two-run double in the sixth to round out the scoring.
“We played pretty well against some decent teams,” Wall said. “I’m proud of the way the guys played. Next week we have the Red Rock Classic over at Dixie State and we’ll find out how good we really are.”
Pine View, 4-0, opens with American Fork at 9:30 a.m. Friday at DSU, then plays Spanish Fork at 5 p.m., with two more games scheduled for Saturday.
Skyline 9, Hurricane 2
Logan 2, Hurricane 1
The Tigers held Logan to just two hits, but a couple of Hurricane errors helped the Grizzlies escape with the narrow win. Nick Horsley took the loss, despite pitching well. Horsley also had a double. The Tigers outhit Logan 5-2.
Hurricane, 1-3, will host Beaver Wednesday (3:30 p.m.) and Kanab on Thursday (also 3:30 p.m.).
Maple Mountain 10, Snow Canyon 4
Cimarron Memorial 12, Snow Canyon 2
The Warriors wrapped up the KJ Harrison Classic with a pair of tough losses Saturday afternoon.
Kenneth Poulsen homered and knocked home four runs for the Eagles in a five-inning affair. The Warriors also helped Maple Mountain by committing three errors. Only three of the seven runs allowed by SC’s Breck Eichelberger were earned.
Snow Canyon also struggled to get key hits. The Warriors had nine base hits, but left six men on base. Jackson Nowatzke had two hits and two RBIs in the game for SC.
In the nightcap, Cimarron jumped out early with eight runs in the first inning. Snow Canyon reliever Brenton Thorpe came in and pitched well, allowing just one unearned run in 4.1 innings of work to keep the game from going to mercy rule.
Nowatzke had two more hits to end the day with 4 for 6 in two games for SC, which fell to 1-3 on the young season.
The Warriors will host the Snow Canyon Classic next weekend, opening with Judge Memorial Friday night at 7 p.m.
Cedar dropped a 7-6 decision to Payson despite two RBIs each from Brock Oldroyd and Treyson Esplin. The Redmen were scheduled for a later game Saturday, but no score was reported.
Dixie also had two games scheduled Saturday, but no scores were reported.
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