Huskies win season finale
Special to the Daily
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Steamboat Springs High School baseball’s David Brown and Charley Fitzhugh did everything they could to net the Sailors a win in Game 2 of their doubleheader against Battle Mountain on Saturday, but Huskies starting pitcher Sean Weller kept his team on life support until it was finally over.
Together, Brown and Fitzhugh combined to bomb in five home runs in the back half of the doubleheader, and despite Weller’s sometimes rough outing on the mound, he kept dealing, and the Huskies hung on for the 13-12 win to close out both teams’ seasons. The Sailors won the first game on Saturday, 14-3.
In the nightcap, the Sailors started strong early, holding onto a 4-1 lead through three innings.
With Weller doing his best to stop the bleeding, Battle Mountain sophomore Franklin Reilly did his part in the fourth inning to catapult his team into a scoring frenzy.
With the Sailors switching pitchers from starter Billy Clark to Fitzhugh in the fourth, Reilly sent a bases-loaded pitch over the 370-foot centerfield fence, giving the Huskies a 5-4 lead, their first since the doubleheader’s opening inning.
“I actually thought it was a pop up,” Reilly admitted. “I even slowed down along the first-base line to tell our guy at third to tag up. It was really exciting to help the team. It’s always been in the back of my mind that I wanted to do this.”
Battle Mountain briefly gave up the lead in the fifth inning, after Fitzhugh launched his second home run and Brown blasted his first for a 6-5 Steamboat advantage.
The following at-bat inning for the Huskies proved pivotal. When Steamboat brought in a tired Jesse Pugh as a reliever — Pugh pitched the entire first game for the Sailors — Battle Mountain carved him up to the tune of six runs, giving the Huskies an 11-6 lead.
It was a lead that would become very narrow toward the end, but one that Battle Mountain wouldn’t relinquish.
“This year we’ve really been working on trusting each other and pushing through,” Reilly said. “That’s been big. We’ve really improved that this spring.”
The Sailors’ Fitzhugh had one last at-bat to win the game in walk-off fashion in the seventh, but Huskies senior Will Thrasher took the mound in the final frame and delivered the save, 13-12.
Weller finished the game giving up 16 hits to go with 12 strikeouts and 12 runs. Reilly had six RBIs, and teammate Thomas Singleton knocked in three runs.
Steamboat pitchers Clark, Fitzhugh and Pugh combined to give up 14 hits and walked nine batters.
“We walked too many people and committed a couple errors,” said Fitzhugh, who had six RBIs in the loss. “I think other than that we played pretty solid.”
Both teams finished with 6-13 records this season.