GYPSUM — Eagle Valley baseball fell to Palisade twice during a doubleheader at Pete Nolan Field on Saturday.
It was the unofficial Senior Day for the Devils, who lost the first game, 17-5, and the second of the twinbill, 14-2. Senior Day is Tuesday for the Devils in a game slated for the road at Summit. However, the conditions are not playable up in Summit (snow), so the Tigers will play host to Eagle Valley ... in Gypsum on Tuesday.
Senior Cody Byrnes hit a sacrifice fly to center field in the third inning of Game 1, scoring fellow senior Turner Glissman and making the score 7-2. The Bulldogs rallied for three runs in the fourth and seven in the fifth, increasing the lead to 17-2. Senior Kody Jaramillo led off the fifth inning with a walk and later scored on a double from junior Ethan Ellsworth, who later scored on a single by Byrnes. Harrison Stevens, who reached base with a walk, scored on an RBI single by Wade Ticer, concluding the scoring at 17-5.
The Devils pitching surrendered eight walks in Game 1.
“It’s tough to come back from that,” said Devils coach Jesse Meryhew of the free passes. “And Palisade is a good team. You have to give them credit.”
Palisade (13-6 overall, 11-3 in league) is indeed a tough team, holding the No. 2 spot in the 4A Western Slope behind Delta.
Eagle Valley took the lead in the first inning of Game 2 after a two-run home run to dead center by senior Travis Edgar that scored Byrnes. Byrnes had reached on a double down the line.
“The first pitch I felt like I swung on my shoes and I was late,” Edgar said of his home run. “And then I swung super easy and hit it. Honestly, I thought to myself, ‘Dang, I flew out.’”
The Bulldogs responded with a 13-run second inning and strong pitching to hold the Devils scoreless the rest of the way.
Senior Day Tuesday
The Devils (9-8-1, 7-6 League) host Summit on Tuesday, where the nine Eagle Valley seniors will be honored.
“It’s a great group of guys,” said Meryhew, who has been coaching the team for three years. “They come to practice every day and put in the work and the time. Every year, they’ve continually gotten better. So, you can’t ask for much more as the coach.”
“It’s exciting and bittersweet,” Edgar said of his senior season. “I love it. We have such a close bond.”
With the two losses Saturday, the Devils are on the outside looking in at the playoffs.
“There’s a long shot,” Meryhew said. “We need some teams to lose. Then we’d have to basically get a bid in.”
The Devils host Summit on Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. at Pete Nolan Field in Gypsum to close out the season.
“We just have to come out and play hard and give it to them,” Edgar said. “Do what we need to do.”