Five Western Slope players make CHSAA All-State baseball teams
Western Slope schools are well-represented on the Class 4A all-state baseball teams.
The Colorado High School Activities Association released all-state teams for all spring sports. The teams were selected by coaches.
Tyrus Lopez, the Southwestern League’s player of the year, was a first-team all-state selection. Lopez, a senior, finished the season with 94 strikeouts in 64 innings and a 1.64 ERA. He is signed to play baseball at Arizona Western College, a community college in Yuma.
“I think he did a good job of leading by example,” Montrose coach Landon Wareham said. “He’s a hard worker and really put in a lot of time during the offseason, and that gives the younger guys something to look up to.”
Rifle senior knuckleballer Bailey Hoffmeister and Delta senior middle infielder Keaton Reiher were Class 4A second-team picks.
Durango, which made the deepest playoff run of any Western Slope team before falling in the semifinals of the state playoffs, had one first-team selection with outfielder Blake Dunlap.
In Class 2A, Hotchkiss outfielder and pitcher Devan Rupe was a first-team all-state selection. Rupe led Class 2A with a .701 batting average and .730 on-base percentage and was second in the state in RBI and slugging percentage.
“When I was playing really tight, I trained myself to relax and not think too much,” said Rupe, a junior. “Every practice our coaches would do different situations, and that helped me loosen up for certain moments in games.”
Rupe was playing for the Rocky Mountain Baseball Club in Grand Junction, but after sustaining tendon damage in his shoulder, Rupe said he is focused on rehabbing for football season.
Palisade’s Brier YoungFleish and Montrose’s Grace Halbach were Class 4A all-state second-team selections.
YoungFleish, a sophomore, led Palisade with 10 goals and supplied the Bulldogs with offense after senior Cruz Maestas was lost for the season because of a knee injury.
Fruita Monument senior Lindsey Burenheide was the lone selection to the all-state team. The senior attacker was second in the state in assists, and she led Fruita Monument to a 13-2 record.