Mental mistakes cost Moffat County home opener with Steamboat Springs | SteamboatToday.com

Mental mistakes cost Moffat County home opener with Steamboat Springs

Sailors come back after weak 1st inning to win, 7-4

Andy Bockelman

Steamboat Springs starting pitcher Vidal Zuniga keeps an eye on Moffat County's Adain Wilmot on third base during the Bulldogs' Tuesday game with the Sailors at the Craig Middle School field. MCHS varsity baseball lost its first home game, 7-4, the second part of a doubleheader canceled due to snow.

— The teams of Northwest Colorado and their fans are used to chilly conditions, but even they have their limits.

A Tuesday doubleheader in Craig between Moffat County High School and Steamboat Springs turned into a solo game as snowfall became too difficult to ignore, the Sailors coming out ahead 7-4, a comeback win after trailing most of the game.

In their first home game, the Bulldogs looked confident in the opening inning, Adain Wilmot and Hunter Roberts each getting on base and a single from clean-up batter Colby Beckett driving them home.

Spencer Turner then scored after being brought in by younger brother Josh, while Beckett took the opportunity to steal home for the Dogs' fourth and final run.

Steamboat starter Vidal Zuniga was replaced by Nate Roach, who shut down the rest of the Bulldog batters to close the inning.

A line drive by Sailor Quintin White helped put Steamboat on the board, but with Mike Bingham on the mound, MCHS slowed the Sailor velocity, picking

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off Solomon Wel-

tzheimer and striking out Jack Martin.

Sprinkles of rain turned into solid sleet, blowing over quickly but leaving a bitter wind in its place, the Sailors picking up two more runs starting with Canon Reece stealing an unguarded home plate, though Moffat County catcher Hugo Hernandez was able to prevent Roach from doing the same to keep it at 4-3 going into the bottom of the third inning.

MCHS coach Justin Folley provided a pep talk to his players, telling them to bear down through the cold, the Bulldog bench coming alive as Bingham smashed the very next pitch nearly to the wall, diving in the dirt, safe at third base.

The excitement tur-

ned to outrage, though, when Bingham was ruled out by umpires for not touching first base.

The game slowed down from there, as neither side managed to get much going until the top of the sixth, as a hit by Zuniga off reliever Spencer Turner was overthrown by Roberts to Beckett at first base, who was unable to throw home quickly enough, which got Zuniga two RBIs and put Steamboat up 5-4.

The Sailors would score twice more in the seventh, as Keaton Humber and Roach each crossed the plate on Bulldog errors, Moffat County unable to make up the difference in the final inning, as snow came down harder.

"We ended up down on ourselves after they started scoring and couldn't get back up," Wilmot said. "We had a lot of momentum and then lost it as soon as they got a hit."

The defensive effort was far different from the 2-1 road loss to Aspen the team suffered Saturday, Folley said.

"Any time you have double-digit errors, you're bound to lose games," he said. "Offensively we definitely looked better today, good strikeouts and other parts of the game."

Steamboat finished with nine hits to the Bulldogs' six, MCHS now 0-2, the Sailors 2-3.

Though the two Highway 40 rivals have already rescheduled one match-up, Folley expects pushing back the second game should not be too tough, though each have a lot on their plate in the next week, Moffat County meeting Gunnison in Grand Junction and Steamboat playing Delta in Rifle.

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com or follow him on Twitter @CDP_Sports.