Warriors, Tigers both top Uintah, Utah at Suplizio Field

Central High School’s Joe Smith slides into third under the tag by Uintah’s Ryker Thacker during the bottom of the fourth inning of Tuesday’s game at Suplizio Field. Smith scored later in the inning in Central’s 5-3 victory.

•   Central’s John Woods displayed a characteristic of any good pitcher Tuesday afternoon against Uintah, Utah.

Woods’ composure on the mound allowed him to settle down after two rough innings to guide the Warriors to a 5-3 win over the Utes at Suplizio Field.

The senior gave up one run in both the first and second inning, allowing three hits and walking two batters. After that, Woods allowed only one more hit and struck out five batters.

“The first couple innings I was real wild and couldn’t find the strike zone,” Woods said. “But once I settled in, I had a feeling I was going to be able to finish the game.”

Woods’ rough start could possibly be attributed to the game beginning more than 30 minutes behind schedule as Uintah was late arriving to the field.

“We started late, and maybe that got him out of his rhythm and flow,” Central coach Chuck Yost said. “But John is a competitor and he will give us everything he’s got.”

Woods’ early time on the mound mimicked the Warriors’ start at the plate as Uintah starter Jake Bailey held the Warriors scoreless through the first three innings. In the fourth inning, Lanny

Baker ended Central’s hitting slump with a leadoff double. After Spencer Hicks and Joe Smith both walked, Warriors first baseman Dylan Begg hit an RBI single. Alex Heide followed that up with a two-run single to give the Warriors a 4-2 lead.

Baker scored another run in the fifth on Hicks’ RBI single.

“We kept getting a few guys on but couldn’t get them in,” Yost said. “It was nice to put two to three hits together and Lanny Baker got it all started with the double.”

Baker led the way for the Warriors, going 3 for 3 with two doubles.

Central begins league play tonight at 6 p.m. against Fruita Monument at Suplizio Field.

“We are going to have to carry this momentum into (Wednesday),” Yost said. “Fruita is a good club and we will see their best and they will see ours.”

•  In the second game of the doubleheader, Grand Junction defeated Uintah 11-1 in six innings.

The Tigers jumped out early by scoring twice in the first inning, including an RBI single from Aaron Berk. With the bases loaded, Conner Dixon lined into a double play to end the inning.

Grand Junction didn’t waste much time putting up runs in the next inning, scoring three runs before Geoff Baldwin launched a three-run home run to give the Tigers an 8-0 lead.

“That was nice because I thought we were going to blow it open in the first,” Tigers coach Kyle Rush said. “So it was nice to come back in the second and get the six runs there.”

Grand Junction had opportunities in the fourth inning to score its 10th run and end the game by mercy rule, but the Utes held the Tigers to one run. Trevor Richards drove in the Utes’ only run in the sixth inning. Grand Junction’s Andy Willett ended the game in the bottom of the sixth with an RBI single.

The Tigers threw four pitchers in the win and starter Dixon earned the victory.

“We got our pitchers a lot of work,” Rush said. “We were a little flat in the middle of the game but overall it was a good day.”

Grand Junction begins league play Friday against Durango.


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