Steamboat Legion team opens district play with 8-1 victory

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— The Steamboat Springs American Legion baseball team opened up the District Tournament on Thursday in much the same way it played the season.

Steamboat, the No. 3 seed in the tournament, got strong pitching performances from Tyler Brown and Carson Becker and just enough timely hits in beating sixth-seeded Moffat County, 8-1, in Glenwood Springs.

“In a double elimination tournament the most important thing is to win that first game,” Steamboat manager Dave Roy said.

Brown threw four innings, gave up two hits and struck out nine. Besides a Bubba Ivers solo shot, Brown was nearly unhittable. Becker followed with three innings of one-hit ball, striking out five. Neither Steamboat pitcher walked a hitter.

“We were able to save these guys,” Roy said. “They’re ready to throw some (today) and the day after.”

Steamboat got two runs in the first, one in the third, two in the fourth, one in the fifth and two in the sixth.

Brown had three hits and two RBIs. Brandon Clark and Tommy Lyon each had two hits, and Michael Yost and Justin Ditter each had one.

Steamboat resumes play at 5:30 p.m. today against Rangely.

If the team hopes to make next weekends state tournament in Craig, Steamboat has to finish in the top two of the tournament. Moffat County has an automatic bid because it is the host.

“We’re trying to save our pitchers as much as possible,” said Roy, whose team is without No. 1 pitcher Alan Capistron, who is on vacation. “We got that done (Thursday).”

— To reach Luke Graham, call 871-4229 or e-mail lgraham@steamboatpilot.com

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