Fast start helps Central easily get past Palisade

Central’s Joe Smith, right, gets a high five from teammate Travis Key after he scores on Kyle Brown’s single with an error that scored three runs in the bottom of the fourth inning of Wednesday’s game against Palisade.

Scott Clow is in the zone.

The Central High School baseball player is hitting over .600 and continued to see the ball well Wednesday night in Central’s 13-3, six-inning victory over Palisade at Suplizio Field.

Clow went 2 for 3 with two doubles and scored three runs.

“He is doing real well for us on both ends of the field,” Central coach Chuck Yost said. “It is fun to watch him. He has a lot of confidence at the plate and he is using the whole field.”

Clow, the Warriors’ ace, threw two shutout innings, striking out two batters. The junior opened the game with a double to left field.

“The whole team’s confidence is high right now,” Clow said. “I have approached every game the same way and we have to keep it up.”

Clow’s double spurned a four-run inning that included Travis Key’s three-run home run off the netting in center field. Yost said it was important for the Warriors (5-1) to get off the fast start.

“You want to set the tone by scoring first, and offensively we always play for the big inning,” Yost said.

Palisade starter Jordan Salazar was pitching in his first game since the Bulldogs’ only other game, nearly two weeks ago. After Central’s four-run outburst in the first, the junior settled down and allowed one run in the second.

He was replaced by Jesse Brannon, who held the Warriors scoreless in the third, but allowed six runs in the fourth inning. Brannon struggled with his control, walking four in the inning.

With the bases loaded, Central’s Kyle Brown hit a bases-clearing single to give the Warriors a comfortable 8-3 lead.

“We had some timely hits with runners in scoring position,” Yost said. “We always want to play for the big inning.”

After Clow’s two scoreless innings, John Woods came on for Central. The senior allowed three runs to the Bulldogs (0-2), one in the third and two in the fourth.

Alex Kitzman took over for Woods in the fifth inning and allowed one hit and struck out five batters.

“I was really pleased with the pitching,” Yost said. “Our pitchers came out and threw strikes and if you don’t beat yourself with walks and errors, you are going to win a lot of games.”

The game was arranged to make up for a contest that was lost by both teams in the Bill Fanning Classic because of weather. Palisade coach Steve Moore said the Bulldogs were excited for the opportunity to get back on the field.

“I wanted this game bad,” Moore said. “We have played one game and our kids needed to get onto the field to see some type of competition.”

Moore said he thought the team looked a little rusty to begin the game but settled in and played well at times.

“We did some things well, but we need to work on fundamental,” Moore said. “We were swinging at a lot of bad balls and we weren’t disciplined at the plate. But I think we will learn a lot from this game and it will help us a lot.”

Central plays Saturday against Emery, Utah at Montrose High School before playing two home games Tuesday and Wednesday of next week. Palisade has a doubleheader at Eagle Valley this weekend.


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