GYPSUM — Hey, Skip, the boys did fine.
Eagle Valley’s Travis Edgar threw six innings of perfect baseball,and finished with a two-hitter as the Devils won their league opener, 6-1, over Summit County on Tuesday afternoon in Gypsum.
And that should lift the spirits of Eagle Valley manager Jesse Meryhew, who was undergoing surgery on Tuesday in his battle against cancer.
“It’s huge for the start of the league,” interim manager Paul Sabo said. “And Jess being out, we had something to prove that we could play without him. He’s a class guy. He’s got a lot of integrity and a lot of character.”
Getting a win is a lot easier when your ace is dealing. Edgar mowed through the Summit County lineup with seeming ease. The senior fanned 10 and walked no one. In his six perfect innings, Summit got only two balls out of the infield and only one of them was sharply hit. The Tigers’ Duncan Biggin smacked a fly ball right at Eagle Valley center-fielder Cody Byrnes in the fourth, but otherwise, it was an Edgar punch-out or tame grounders.
“I started to realize it there in the fifth inning,” catcher Eric Boyd said. “I was sitting there realizing that they were still going through the order, three batters an inning. It hit me right there.”
Edgar and Boyd were in sync. Edgar changed speed and location well and had a 6-0 lead going into the seventh and final inning.
Summit leadoff hitter Jake Latta roped an 0-2 pitch into the left-center gap to break up the perfecto.
‘It Was A Good Hit’
“It’s a bummer to give up a no-hitter in the top of the seventh,” Edgar said. “I can appreciate that it was a good hit. It was a good hit by a leadoff batter, which makes it better.”
On a tough day to hit — the bat had to sting with temperatures with high 30s and low 40s — Eagle Valley staked Edgar to a lead early. Boyd ripped an RBI double in the second for a 1-0 lead. Slater Sabo plated Harrison Stevens in the bottom of the third with a single. Edgar gave himself some breathing room with a two-run single in the fifth. Stevens and Byrnes added some insurance in the sixth.
‘Win’s A Win’
“A win’s a win,” Paul Sabo said. “We put the ball in play when we needed to. We ran the bases well. Travis pitched well and we played some good defense behind him.”
Eagle Valley upped its record to 3-2-1 overall and 1-0 in the Western Slope. Steamboat Springs comes to town on Saturday for a pair of games at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.