Great Falls scores walk-off win over GJ

GREAT FALLS, Mont. — Yoandy Barroso’s chopper sailed over the head of Ashley Graeter with two out in the bottom of the ninth inning Monday, scoring Daurys Mercedes to give the Great Falls Voyagers a 5-4 walk-off win over the Grand Junction Rockies.

The Rockies are still one game behind Orem in the South Division of the Pioneer League after the Owlz lost 9-8 in 10 innings to Helena.

Julian Yan gave the Rockies a 1-0 lead when he singled home Wilfredo Rodriguez with two out in the first inning. David Dahl stretched the lead to 3-0 when he doubled home Jason Stolz and Max White, also with two out, in the second.

Great Falls got on the board with two runs in the second inning, the second on a two-out error by Juan Ciriaco error, the first of three he committed in the game.

“We let them back in the game by letting them score those two runs,” Rockies manager Tony Diaz said. “We had all the momentum and gave it away.”

Starter Matt Carasiti didn’t allow an earned run in six innings and induced double plays in his last three innings of work. Jesse Meaux worked around a leadoff single to hold onto the lead, but the Voyagers scored two runs against Raul Fernandez in the eighth with the help of two Grand Junction errors for a 4-3 lead, but the Rockies battled back.

Going into the ninth inning the Rockies hadn’t had a base runner since the fifth, but that ended when Matt Wessinger reached on an error. With Dahl at the plate, Wessinger stole second. He scored when Dahl hit a grounder up the middle that went into right-center when shortstop Brad Salgado missed making a diving stop. Dahl wound up at second with one out. The inning got crazier from there.

“I was proud of how we fought back after they took the lead,” Diaz said. “That’s what this team has done all year long, and even though we still lost, we know that we are capable of making a comeback whenever we need to.”

After Dahl’s infield double, Wilfredo Rodriguez flied out to right field. Dahl tagged and beat the Kyle Robinson throw to third, but the throw got by third baseman Tyler Williams. Dahl tried to score, but he was thrown out by pitcher Brandon Hardin, who was backing up the throw. That sent the game tied at 4-4 to the bottom of the ninth.

Daurys Mercedes started the ninth with a walk against Scott Oberg. The next two batters moved him to third, setting the stage of the winning single by Barroso.

Grand Junction finished with only five hits — they had 11 in each of the first two games of the series.

The Rockies (36-30, 15-13) finish the season 19-9 against North Division opponents.

The Rockies open a two-game series in Idaho Falls at 6:15 tonight on the third stop of their 11-game, four-city road trip.


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