Crow’s arm, bat lead Palisade past Delta
Small ball and a small but determined pitcher led to a big Palisade win Tuesday in 4A Western Slope League baseball.
Tass Crow, who was listed at 5-foot-6, 150 pounds during the football season, came within an out of a one-hit shutout at Canyon View Park before the Bulldogs settled for a 6-2 win over previously unbeaten Delta, Class 4A’s third-ranked team in the Associated Press poll.
Crow walked six batters through six innings and didn’t retire the side in order until his four-pitch sixth inning, but every time he got in trouble, he got tougher.
“I think he was effectively wild, if that makes any sense,” said Delta coach Marty Rover, whose squad dropped to 11-1, 7-1 WSL. “He didn’t have his best stuff today ... but he’s a kid who doesn’t have to have his best stuff. He’s just a competitor.”
Palisade catcher Andrew Bowles had the best view of what Crow was doing and offered a similar sentiment.
“Tass is one of the most mentally strong kids I know,” Bowles said.
Bulldogs coach Aaron Howard also explained Palisade’s win by saying, “It started with Tass. He pounded the strike zone and really set the tone for us.”
Crow also delivered at the plate, hitting a run-scoring double in the Bulldogs’ two-run fourth and a run-scoring single in the three-run fifth.
His double in the fourth stood out because it wasn’t a bunt. Palisade put down four bunts, two for singles and two to move runners into scoring position, in that inning.
Howard said the Bulldogs have been practicing the drag bunt, and they turned to it after Delta pitcher Isaiah Kathrein retired eight batters in a row entering the fourth.
The win put Palisade (6-3 overall) in first place in the WSL with a 4-0 mark, and Bowles said the Bulldogs were asking each other as they passed in the hallways at school Tuesday: Are you ready?
“We’ve been ready for weeks,” Bowles said. “I can’t emphasize how huge it was for us.”