Devils baseball solid in opening weekend
The Eagle Valley baseball team had a very solid start to its season with a 1-2 performance against Class 4A squads at the Delta Tournament Friday and Saturday.Missing a bunch of starters<Micah Bernhardt, Jose Meza, Justin Wood, Craig Jagger and Jason Leniger<who were playing the the 3A State Basketball Tournament, Eagle Valley used the weekend to get a look other players on the team with an eye down the road.Devils manager Robert Ellsworth, for one, liked what he saw.3We feel real positive about what happened this weekend, Ellsworth said. 3All the teams we played against were 4A and that1s great competition for us. Some good things that came out of this weekend were that we faced some good teams and threw strikes.The Devils certainly did in 2-0 and 12-7 losses to Alamosa and Cortez, respectively, and in a 7-3 win over Cortez. Zach Baldwin got his first start of the season and went four innings and whiffed six against Alamosa. J.J. Alvis followed with three throng innings of his own. Against Cortez, Nolan Royle and Derek Baldwin teamed up for the win and 12 K1s.In the finale, while he got hurt by some defense behind him, T.J. Stanford pitched four solid innings in his first game back from rotator-cuff surgery.3He pitched well, Ellsworth said of his ace. 3There were a few errors when we had two outs that hurt. But everybody pitched well. It1s early so we know we can put five to 10-miles per hour more on their fastballs.The hitting looked solid. Royle had two extra-base jobs against Delta, while Ismael Hermosillo went on a six-hit rampage on the weekend.Lars Lueders also showed that he had some considerable power in his Eagle Valley debut. With the Devils down 7-6 to Delta, he absolutely crushed a ball to center field that appeared to bounce off the bleachers for a home run. It ended up being ruled a ground-rule double.3It would have tied the game at seven. But if ifs and buts were candy and nuts, we1d all have a Merry Christmas, the Eagle Valley skipper said in his Ellsworth-ese. 3Whatever they called it, it was monster, just monster.Eagle Valley returns to tournament action when it travels to Rangely this weekend. Friday, the Devils take on Machebeuf and Steamboat Springs, followed by a Saturday date with Rangely.