Grizzlies win battle of unbeatens
CARSON CITY – Don’t include South Tahoe High among the elite of Northern Nevada 4A baseball yet.
Galena, last year’s state runner-up, limited the previously unbeaten Vikings to two hits in an 11-0 win Monday at Carson High School.
The two programs entered the final game of the Carson tournament with a collective 7-0 record, but the Grizzlies quickly distinguished themselves in a contest shortened to four innings.
Galena (5-0) scattered four singles during a three-run first inning against Viking starter Jason Winslow and pounced on each STHS mistake.
“They’re really balanced, disciplined and synchronized at the plate,” said Winslow, who was making his first start of the season after a batting cage accident took off a fingernail from one of his pitching fingers during the preseason.
“Playing a team like that makes you want to strive much farther. You want to play those teams every game because it makes you that much better.”
The Grizzlies extended their lead to 8-0 in the second. Jacob Anderson socked a two-run triple and Jake Hess delivered a two-run double as STHS pitchers left too many pitches up in the strike zone.
That was more than enough support for Galena starter Josh Evans, who allowed the Vikings to hit only three balls hit out of the infield during his three innings on the mound. Evans kept the count in his favor and didn’t issue any base on balls.
Hard-throwing lefty Brian Pointer finished the shutout with a perfect fourth inning, including a pair of strikeouts.
“They threw strikes, and they gave us a chance to put it out in play,” said Galena coach Tom Flynn. “That’s the key, to get ahead of batters.”
STHS (3-1), which has thrived with “Small Ball” in previous games, was never able to implement its style of play. The Vikings’ best scoring opportunity came in the first inning when Otto Trebotich walked, stole second and took third on Kevin Yelles’ groundout. But Galena third baseman Hess doubled up Trebotich on Derek Holmgren’s line drive.
“They didn’t see our best team, and our guys know that,” said STHS coach Matt Tillson. “That could benefit us down the road when we play them on Friday, then again on the following Tuesday.
“This is less than three percent of our season. As long as these guys learn something from it, that’s all that really matters out here.”
Hess drove in two more runs in the third inning when his high fly ball to right center was misplayed, allowing Eric and Scott Underwood to cross the plate. Hess scored the Grizzlies’ final run on reserve Charlie Price’s RBI single.
“We’re off to a good start, but we have to keep it in perspective and just keep it going,” Flynn said. “We have some good players who work hard.”
Singles by Winslow and Matt Marsh accounted for all of the Vikings’ hitting. Eric Underwood led the Grizzlies with three hits and three runs scored.
Tillson, who used four pitchers, was pleased with the mound duty of Chris Ewing and Derek Holmgren. Ewing could have escaped the third inning without allowing a run, but a misplayed fly ball and an attempt to throw out a runner at third base on an infield grounder helped the Grizzlies score three runs. Holmgren fanned two Grizzlies during a one-two-three fourth inning.
“Derek won’t tell you he’s a pitcher, but he can throw,” Tillson said. “Chris pitched a (heckuva) an inning. He should have been out of that one with no runs at all.”
South Tahoe will try to get back on track today when it plays Spanish Springs in the Manogue tournament. Game time is 3:30 p.m. at Damonte Ranch High in Reno.
“What kind of character do they have? Are they going to sit and cry, or they going to bounce back and not let it affect them?” Tillson said. “I know I’m not going to quit, and I’m sure none of them will.”